Snapping its two-day winning spree against the American currency, the rupee on Wednesday dropped 10 paise to end at 66.59 on renewed demand for the dollar from banks and importers amid higher greenback overseas.
Persistent foreign capital outflows also affected the market sentiment, a forex dealer said.
The domestic currency today resumed lower at 66.52 as against Tuesday’s closing level of 66.49 at the Interbank Foreign Exchange market and dropped further to 66.67 per dollar before ending at 66.59, showing a loss of 10 paise or 0.15%.
The rupee had gained 27 paise, or 0.40%, in the previous two days.
The domestic currency moved in a range of 66.46 and 66.67 per dollar during the day.
The dollar index was higher by 0.26 per cent against a basket of six currencies in the late afternoon trade on Wednesday.
In the overseas market, the dollar was slightly higher against the yen and the euro, as investors awaited key events later this week such as the US jobs data.
Although investors have already increased their bets that the US Federal Reserve will start raising rates in the middle of this month, the pace of dollar purchases has slowed after a downbeat US manufacturing report hinted at gradual US rate increases next year.
Oil prices rose in Asia today, three days before an OPEC meeting in which the cartel is expected to maintain high output levels despite a global supply glut.
US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in January was up 29 cents to USD 41.94 and Brent crude for January was trading 18 cents higher at 44.79 a barrel.
Meanwhile, the benchmark Sensex moved down by 51.56 points or 0.20% to end at 26,117.85.
Pramit Brahmbhatt, Veracity Group CEO, said, “Today the rupee ended lower by 10 paise to 66.59 per dollar on good dollar demand from banks and importers.”
The trading range for the spot USD/INR pair is expected to be within 66 to 66.75 levels.
In forward market on Wednesday, premium for dollar showed a mixed trend due to uneven demand and supply transacions.
The benchmark six-month premium payable in May eased to 207-209 paise from 208-210 paise yesterday while far forward November 2016 contract moved up to 415.5-417.5 paise from 414-416 paise.
The RBI fixed the reference rate for the dollar at 66.6158 and for the euro at 70.6660.
The rupee recovered against the pound sterling to end at 100.15 from 100.28 on Tuesday but declined against the euro to settle at 70.57 as against 70.45.
However, the domestic currency declined against the Japanese currency to close at 54.09 per 100 yen from 53.99.