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    Rupee rises 8 paise to close at 76.40 against US dollar as RBI stuns market with mid-cycle rate hike

    Rupee rises 8 paise to close at 76.40 against US dollar as RBI stuns market with mid-cycle rate hike

    Rupee rises 8 paise to close at 76.40 against US dollar as RBI stuns market with mid-cycle rate hike
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    By PTI  IST (Updated)

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    At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 76.46 against the US dollar. It moved in the range of 76.17 to 76.58 during the session. The rupee finally closed at 76.40, registering a rise of 8 paise over its previous close. On Monday, the rupee had settled at 76.48 against the US dollar.

    The rupee appreciated 8 paise to settle at 76.40 (provisional) against the US dollar on Wednesday following RBI's surprise rate hike ahead of the US Federal Reserve's policy decision. At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 76.46 against the US dollar. It moved in the range of 76.17 to 76.58 during the session.
    The rupee finally closed at 76.40, registering a rise of 8 paise over its previous close. On Monday, the rupee had settled at 76.48 against the US dollar.
    The forex market was closed on Tuesday on account of Id-Ul-Fitr. The RBI on Wednesday after an unscheduled MPC meeting hiked the benchmark lending rate by 40 basis points (bps) to 4.40 percent to contain inflation that has remained stubbornly above the target of 6 percent for the last three months.
    The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) headed by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das also raised the level of deposits banks are required to maintain as cash reserve by 50 bps to 4.5 percent to suck out Rs 87,000 crore of liquidity from the banking system. The CRR hike will be effective from May 21.
    The governor said the interest rate hike is aimed at strengthening, and consolidating medium-term economic growth prospects. Overall commentary of the RBI governor was hawkish and that restricted losses for the rupee, said Gaurang Somaiya, Forex & Bullion Analyst, Motilal Oswal Financial Services.
    "But ahead of the important Fed policy statement, we suggest that one must be cautious. Volatility for the USD-INR will continue to remain elevated and we expect it to quote in the range of 76.05 and 76.80," Somaiya said.
    Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, was trading 0.01 percent lower at 103.45.
    On the domestic equity market front, the 30-share BSE Sensex ended 1,306.96 points or 2.29 percent lower at 55,669.03, while the broader NSE Nifty plunged 391.50 points or 2.29 percent to 16,677.60.
    Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, inched up 3.43 percent to USD 108.57 per barrel. Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in the capital market on Monday as they offloaded shares worth Rs 1,853.46 crore, as per stock exchange data.
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