The Indian rupee dropped to its lowest level in more than a week on Wednesday as the dollar climbed broadly against major currencies and Asian peers, while a shaky shares added to the downbeat mood.
At 10:22 a.m. (0452 GMT), the partially convertible rupee was at 45.20/21 per dollar, after hitting 45.26, its weakest since Dec. 27 and 0.5 percent below its close of 44.98/99 on Tuesday.
"The euro has come down from a high of $1.3433 to $1.3270, so the rupee too has weakened in line. For today, one must watch euro and stocks and see whether exporters are entering at 45.25-30 levels," said A. Ajith Kumar, a senior foreign exchange dealer with Federal Bank .
The dollar was supported by further evidence that U.S. economic recovery is becoming self-sustained, while a correction in high-flying commodity prices pressured the Australian dollar.
The index of the dollar against six major currencies was up 0.13 percent at 79.550 points. Most Asian currencies too were weaker.
Indian shares were trading down 0.5 percent, with financials leading the decline, taking cues from weak Asian markets.
The rupee had strengthened 4.1 percent in 2010, helped in part by record $29.3 billion foreign portfolio investments in equities.
One-month offshore non-deliverable forward contracts were quoted at 45.44, weaker than the onshore spot rate.
In the currency futures market, the most traded near-month dollar-rupee contracts on the National Stock Exchange and MCX-SX were both at 45.3850, with the total traded volume on the two exchanges at $1.5 billion.