Rupee edges closer to 80-mark

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Representational ImageFile/ GK

Mumbai: The rupee edged closer to the historic low of 80-mark against the US currency on Thursday as it declined by a little over 18 paise to settle at 79.9975 amid a stronger greenback in overseas markets.

While wholesale inflation remained double-digit for 15 straight months to June, expected deterioration in the country's current account deficit and forex outflows dragged the local unit near to the psychological low level of 80 against the greenback.

A sharp correction in crude oil prices in the past few days, however, has been a breather for the local currency, analysts said.

At the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee started the day on a strong note and touched a high of 79.71 to a dollar in early trade. The local unit lost momentum after the dollar surged to 24-year high levels against a basket of global currencies in the early European trade.

The rupee finally settled at the day's lowest level of 79.9975 to a dollar, down by 18 paise over the previous close of 79.81.

Some of the leading banks such as SBI were already quoting above 80 levels for selling the US dollar.

Wholesale price-based inflation eased to a three-month low of 15.18 per cent in June on a sharp decline in the prices of minerals, but food articles continued to remain costly. June is the 15th consecutive month when the wholesale inflation remained double-digit.

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