Rupee ends at all time low at 49.82 per US dollar

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Mumbai, Oct 23 (UNI) The Rupee today dropped to a lifetime low of 49.82 to a US dollar with a big loss of 50 paise from 49.32 on the previous day on heavy dollar buying support from importers and some foreign banks.

It resumed low at 49.60 per dollar and later recorded the day's high at 49.85 and low at 49.60 per dollar.

The rupee plummeted to an all-time low of 49.5 against the dollar on Wednesday, as foreign portfolio investors continued their selling-spree on stock exchanges. Heavy intervention by the central bank was of little help, as the rupee ended the day at a record closing of 49.28/29 against the dollar, weakening from Tuesday's close of 49.04/06.

The Reserve Bank of India is estimated to have sold upto USD two billion to prevent the dollar from breaching the 50-mark. With this, the rupee has shed more than 20% of its value this year.

According to a senior trader from a foreign bank, the rupee may well have breached the 50-per-dollar mark on Wednesday, had it not been for RBI's intervention. Expectations that the central bank would go for another rate cut in the upcoming credit policy review also weighed heavy on traders' minds.

Rupee plunged to a record low today, driven down by another sharp drop in the stock market and broad-based dollar strength, but suspected central bank intervention kept it from testing 50 per dollar.

However, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today fixed the reference rate for US dollar at Rs 49.79 per unit, up by 50 paise, against yesterday's rate of Rs 49.29 per dollar. The reference rate for Euro also shot up by Rs 56 paise to Rs 63.91 per unit from its last close of Rs 63.35 per unit, a RBI release said.

Meanwhile, the six-month and annualised forward dollar premiums were higher by 0.68 (0.32) per cent and 0.56 (0.34) per cent respectively.

The Rupee today ended weaker at 63.36/38 (63.40/42 ) per unit against the Euro. It closed at 79.96/98 (80.84/86) per unit against the Pound Sterling and at 51.20/22 ( 49.64/66) per hundred units against the Japanese Yen.

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