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Indian rupee dropped on as the dollar climbed against major units
October, 27th 2010

The Indian rupee dropped on Wednesday as the dollar climbed against major units, and subdued domestic stocks cast a shadow on foreign inflows. Oil refiners, the largest buyers of dollars in the local currency market, are expected to step up their purchases for import payments due at the end of each month.

At 10:20 a.m. (0450 GMT), the partially convertible rupee was at 44.56/57 per dollar, weaker than 44.435/445 at close on Tuesday. "The dollar opened strong because of weakness in euro and majors. There will also be buying on dips. Expecting outflows coupled with month-end demand to push the dollar further higher later," said Hari Chandramgathan, a forex dealer at Federal Bank .

"I expect a broad range of 44.50-44.70 range today." Traders expect the rupee to weaken towards 45 when Coal India begins to refund by early next week excess subscriptions for its $3.5 billion IPO, which had attracted institutional orders for about $27 billion mainly from foreign funds.

The dollar edged higher against the yen and euro on Wednesday after the Wall Street Journal said the U.S. Federal Reserve was likely to unveil plans for gradual Treasury purchases at its policy meeting next week.

The index of the dollar against six major currencies was up 0.2 percent. Indian shares fell 0.4 percent in early trade, with outsourcers among the losers, taking cues from weak Asian markets.

Foreign funds have bought shares worth a record $24.6 billion so far in 2010, in addition to last year's $17.5 billion. One-month offshore non-deliverable forward contracts were quoted at 44.95, weaker than the onshore spot rate.

In the currency futures market, the most traded near-month dollar-rupee contracts on the National Stock Exchange , MCX-SX and United Stock Exchange were all at 44.5575, with the total traded volume on the three exchanges at about $1.5 billion.

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