Indian rupee ends at 66.55 against dollar

MUMBAI: Breaking the streak of severe battering it suffered in the last few days, the rupee on Thursday soared by a staggering 225 paise to end at 66.55 against the dollar and the Sensex jumped by over 400 points on the back of RBI opening a special dollar facility for PSU oil companies.

After the rupee plunged to an all-time low of 68.85 on Tuesday, the RBI allowed the three state-owned oil companies to buy dollars directly, the latest in a series of moves to arrest volatility in the domestic currency, which has slid over 20 per cent since April 30.

With PSU oil firms needing USD 8.5 billion every month to import 7.5 million tonnes of crude oil, the swap window will help to ease demand in the spot market. The rupee bounced back to 66.51 before ending at 66.55, a rise of 225 paise or 3.27 per cent — the biggest single-day rise in 15 years.

Some experts are sceptical about Thursday’s turnaround as markets seemed to ignore concerns related to widening current account deficit and the burden of food subsidy that have plagued investor sentiment recently. Opposition parties claim there is panic in the country over the rupee’s fall.