The rupee declined 2 paise to 81.96 against the US dollar in early trade on Thursday amid weak sentiments in the Asian markets and upward movement in the crude oil price.
According to forex traders, positive sentiments in the domestic equities market and inflow of foreign funds provided support to the Indian currency.
At the interbank foreign exchange, the domestic unit opened weak at 81.97 against the dollar and touched 81.93. It slipped to 81.96 against the American currency, registering a fall of 2 paise over its previous close.
On Wednesday, the rupee closed at 81.94 against the US currency.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.02 per cent to 101.50.
After strong demand for fuels in the US outweighed concerns regarding the world's biggest oil producer and consumer defaulting on its debt the oil prices rose in the early Asian trade. Brent crude futures were up by 26 cents at $76.67 per barrel and crude futures gained 28 cents to $72.84.
Traders are also awaiting inflation data, which will provide cues for the Reserve Bank of India's s next monetary policy moves.
"Slippage past 81.97 diffused the upside momentum, rendering the trend sideways again. Should 81.85 hold, expect another upswing, which though is less likely to be directional, until 82.2 is broken," Anand James, Chief Market Strategist at Geojit Financial Services, said.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were net buyers in the capital market on Wednesday as they purchased shares worth Rs 1,833.13 crore, according to exchange data.
The markets on Thursday opened in green with Sensex at 62,165.76, up by 225.56 points and Nifty rose by 32.35 points at 18,347.45. Infosys, HDFC Bank, HCL Tech, HDFC and Tech Mahindra were the top gainers whereas IndusInd Bank, ITC, Tata Steel, Power Grid and Bharti Airtel were the top losers.
With input from PTI
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