Flare-up in trade war, high crude prices to further impact rupee: Analysts

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Mumbai, Sep 8 (IANS) Escalation in global trade protectionist measures, as well as high crude oil prices will continue to exert pressure on the Indian rupee, experts said on Saturday.

However, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is expected to intervene in the spot market via public sector banks to somewhat arrest any sharp decline in the rupee’s value beyond the 72 per US dollar-mark.

The apex bank is known to enter the markets via intermediaries to either sell or buy US dollars to keep the rupee in a stable orbit.

Anindya Banerjee, Deputy Vice President for Currency and Interest Rates with Kotak Securities said the Indian rupee is expected to be under pressure as the US dollar could rise after US jobs data “surprised positively”.

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“At the same time, US President has hinted at fresh set of tariffs on China. Both these news can drive rupee lower. We expect a range of 71.60-72.60 on spot,” Banerjee told IANS.

According to Sajal Gupta, Head Forex and Rates, Edelweiss Securities: “If 72.10 is not breached due to RBI intervention it can go to 70.80. Else a swift movement to 73.50 is not ruled out.”

“So range shall be 71 to 72.80. Market needs a big action or news to reverse the trend… overnight US NFP data was strong and we expect a gap up opening around 72.10 on Monday.”

On the other hand, a lower current account deficit (CAD) as a per cent of GDP in the April-June quarter of 2018-19 might give some support to the Indian rupee.

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“CAD as a percentage of GDP has declined a bit in April-June quarter. This might also support the rupee,” Rushabh Maru — Research Analyst at Anand Rathi Shares and Stock Brokers told IANS

“Focus will now shift to India IIP (Index of Industrial Production) and CPI (Consumer Price Index) data.”

India’s macro-economic inflation and industrial data points such as the CPI, wholesale price index (WPI) for August and IIP for July are scheduled to be released next week.

Apart from macro-data, any further outflow of foreign funds from the Indian equity and bond markets might have an adverse impact on the rupee.

In terms of investments, provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 789.60 crore and the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 1,167.85 crore in the past week.

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Last trade week, the Indian rupee settled above 71 to a US dollar in the spot market. It closed at 71.73 on Friday after breaching its record low of 72.11 per US dollar on Thursday.

–IANS

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