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'Rupee depreciation due to dollar strengthening rather than inherent weakness'

Monday, August 20, 2018

While the rupee is Asia's worst performing currency so far this year, the depreciation is largely owing to the dollar strengthening rather than any inherent weakness in the domestic unit, a senior official at HSBC Global Asset Management said.

The rupee ended below the 70-mark against the US dollar for the first time ever on August 16 on strong demand for the greenback amid the ongoing Turkish crisis.

According to Tushar Pradhan, Chief Investment Officer, HSBC Global Asset Management, India, the rupee compares well against other emerging markets such as Russia, Brazil, Argentina and Turkey.

"While the Indian Rupee is the worst performing in the region (down about 8.5%) this year, it compares well against other emerging markets such as Russia (down 13.7%), Brazil (down 14.8%), Argentina (down 37.8%) and Turkey at (down 42%) for the year," Pradhan told PTI.

The rupee has been on a downtrend amid global uncertainties and concerns over inflation. Pradhan further said "this weakness is more from the dollar strengthening than any inherent weakness in the rupee".

Meanwhile, Indian markets are at lifetime highs and have performed better than other emerging markets.

"Indian bellwether indices such as the Nifty and the Sensex are indeed trading at all-time highs and the same is an indication of expectation of robust earnings growth," Pradhan said.

On crude oil prices, Pradhan said "We feel, given the supply and demand situation, crude oil prices may remain in a trading range, only driven in the short term by news of supply disruption of any kind. Global demand so far remains well aligned to available supply as of now."

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