Rupee falls below 73 for first time as crude approaches $85

Rupee hits lifetime low of 73.34 against dollar

Gandhi Wednesday hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi questioning his silence over the falling value of the Indian Rupee. The soaring crude oil prices have hit their highest since November 2014.

"Till when will the 56-inch chest be on "silent mode".

In Intra-day trade, the rupee had crashed to its then all-time low of 73.42 per dollar yesterday.

With the rupee plunging to a historic low, the government and the RBI swung into action to slow down a further fall of the battered Indian currency as global economic conditions continued to deteriorate and fears of higher inflation increased. Indonesia's central bank governor stressed the need to raise interest rates before the Fed to avoid "drastic" capital outflows in the wake of a heavily flagged Fed hike in December.

A majority of analysts polled by Reuters last week expected a third consecutive 25 basis point increase in the key repo rate, now set at 6.50 percent, though speculation has mounted in recent days that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) could opt for a 50 bps hike.

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Edelweiss Securities expects that external headwinds in the form of surging crude prices and a depreciating rupee continue to be key concerns for the bond markets.

He said: "You can not wish away the depreciation in the rupee if you are a current account deficit country". India imports more than two-thirds of its oil needs.

DBS economist Radhika Rao also predicted a rate hike.

Oil prices have reached four-year peaks as the market focused on upcoming United States sanctions on Iran while shrugging off the year's largest weekly build in USA crude stockpiles.

The 10-year gilt yield closed at 8.112%, up over 12 basis points from its previous close of 7.988%.

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