Mumbai: The rupee on Friday ended just one paisa down at 54.52 against the dollar, amid alternate bouts of demand-supply of the US currency and capital outflows.
Forex dealers said initially the rupee sentiment was helped by a drop in March retail inflation as it gave room for RBI to cut rates on its May 3 monetary policy review.
However, weakness in local equities and a stronger dollar overseas hit the local currency later in the day.
The rupee commenced strong at 54.41 against the dollar from its previous close of 54.51 at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market.
Later, it moved in a range of 54.34-54.62 before settling at 54.52, a loss of mere one paisa from its previous close.
Meanwhile, the BSE benchmark Sensex today slumped by nearly 300 points at 18,242.56 as software major Infosys crashed by over 21 percent due to disappointing results and a weak revenue forecast for this fiscal ignoring fall in retail inflation and better-than-expected industrial growth.
Foreign institutional investors pulled out Rs 28.59 crore from local equities, as per BSE provisional data.
Pramit Brahmbhatt, CEO, Alpari Financial Services (India) said: "Today rupee fell back after early rise as equity markets closed down by over one per cent also the dollar traded strong in the international market which further depreciated."
The dollar index was up by 0.2 percent against a basket of six major global currencies.
"The rupee did not react much to the positive set of data. Although, Consumer Price Index (CPI) has eased month on month basis, it is still at elevated levels above 10 percent, which is still a concern," said Abhishek Goenka, Founder and CEO, India Forex Advisors.
The industrial output data, which was announced earlier in the day, rose by 0.6 percent in February, while retail inflation fell to 10.39 percent in March.
Meanwhile, the premium for the forward dollar remained weak on persistent receivings by exporters.
The benchmark six-month forward dollar premium payable in September declined to 177-1/2-179 paise from Wednesday's close of 179-1/2-181 paise.
Far-forward contracts maturing in March also softened to 349-350-1/2 paise from 352-1/2-354-1/2 paise.
The RBI fixed the reference rate for the US dollar at 54.4425 and for euro at 71.3310.
The rupee fell back against the pound sterling to 83.82 from last close of 83.49 and also turned negative against the Japanese yen to end at 54.94 per 100 yen from 54.76.
It, however, recovered against the euro to 71.18 from previous close of 71.42.