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India Rupee Snaps Two-Day Gain on Concern U.S. Stimulus May Slow

Feb. 21 (Bloomberg) -- India’s rupee snapped a two-day gain on concern U.S. policy makers may slow debt purchases that boosted the supply of dollars and contributed to inflows into emerging markets.

Minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last meeting released yesterday show several officials said the monetary authority should vary the pace of buying bonds. The Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback against six major trading partners, rose to the highest level in more than five months.

“There is caution after the Fed minutes as inflows may slow,” said Naveen Raghuvanshi, a trader at Development Credit Bank Ltd. in Mumbai. “The inflows into rupee debt will keep the currency supported for a few days.”

The rupee declined 0.8 percent to 54.4800 per dollar in Mumbai, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It touched 54.6300 earlier, the weakest level since Jan. 17. One-month implied volatility, a gauge of expected moves in the exchange rate used to price options, rose 30 basis points, or 0.30 percentage point, to 9.40 percent.

The Securities & Exchange Board of India sold 666.7 billion rupees ($12.2 billion) of debt-purchase quotas to foreign investors at a monthly auction yesterday, according to two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named as they aren’t authorized to speak to the media. India raised the cap on overseas purchases of the notes by $10 billion to $75 billion last month.

Three-month onshore rupee forwards traded at 55.60 per dollar, compared with 55.12 yesterday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Offshore non-deliverable contracts were at 55.52 versus 55.02. Forwards are agreements to buy or sell assets at a set price and date. Non-deliverable contracts are settled in dollars.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jeanette Rodrigues in Mumbai at jrodrigues26@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Amit Prakash at aprakash1@bloomberg.net

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