The rupee today depreciated by a hefty 37 paise to close at nearly one-week low of 54.38 on fresh dollar demand from importers and capital outflows from the stock market, amid political uncertainty.
The rupee commenced remarkably lower at 54.30 a dollar at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market as against last close of 54.01.
It moved in a narrow range of 54.22 and 54.42 with little support as FIIs pulled out nearly Rs 80 crore from Indian stocks as per provisional data.
The rupee finally concluded near the day's lowest levels at 54.38, a fall of 37 paise or 0.59 per cent. Month-end dollar demand from importers, mainly oil refiners, and also some banks put pressure on the rupee, said forex dealers.
A firm dollar overseas also weighed on the rupee with the euro falling to a one-week low after reports of disappointing Eurozone business activity data earlier today, said traders.
Pramit Brahmbhatt, CEO, Alpari Financial Services (India) said: "The rupee finished with losses amidst gains in dollar index on risk aversion in global markets. The ongoing political rift between government and its strongest ally has also weighed on rupee."
The dollar index, a gauge of six major global rivals, was up by 0.49 per cent after lacklustre Chinese manufacturing data and downbeat Eurozone purchasing managers' index (PMI).
New York crude oil was quoting below USD 92 a barrel in European market today.
The Indian stock market benchmark Sensex today dropped further by 146.76 points, or 0.79 per cent, to a one-week low amid the government's main ally Trinamool Congress appearing all set to break its ties with UPA coalition by withdrawing its ministers and the support tomorrow over issues like FDI in retail.
The premium for the forward dollar recovered slightly on fresh payments by banks and corporates.
The benchmark six-month forward dollar premium payable in February edged up to 149-151 paise from previous close of 147-149 paise.
The premium for far-forward contracts maturing in August also moved up to 299-301 paise from 292-294 paise.
The RBI has fixed the reference rate for the US dollar at 54.3375 and for euro at 70.5725.
The rupee declined further to 88.02 against the pound sterling from overnight close of 87.77, while it continued to rule better against the euro to end at 70.40 from 70.56.
The rupee also strengthened against the Japanese Yen to 69.52 per 100 yen from last close of 68.72.