Rupee gains tracking shares; dollar demand from oil limits rise

A street side restaurant owner holds a bundle of Indian currency notes as he sits outside his restaurant in New Delhi

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A street side restaurant owner holds a bundle of rupee notes as he sits outside his restaurant in New …

By Swati Bhat

MUMBAI (Reuters) - The rupee strengthened on Friday on continued foreign fund inflows into domestic shares, but month-end dollar demand from oil companies limited further gains.

Foreign fund inflows into the domestic debt and equity markets have totalled over $3.5 billion so far in December, helping the rupee notch its second consecutive weekly gain.

Traders said the market will continue to monitor the dollar's moves against global currencies next week in the absence of any key domestic trigger.

Traders expect the rupee to move in a 61.50 to 62.60 per dollar range next week.

"I think broadly we will have to wait for trigger news and only one is in sight, which is inflation on the domestic front. You never know about the global markets though," said Paresh Nayar, head of fixed income and currencies at First Rand Bank.

December inflation data, which will be key for the market to cement views on the future course of monetary action, is due only in mid-January.

The partially convertible rupee closed at 61.85/86 per dollar compared with 62.16/17 on Thursday. The unit gained 0.3 percent on the week.

Sensex rose on Friday, sending indexes to their second consecutive weekly gains, as technology stocks such as Infosys extended a rally this year after data continued to signal a sturdier U.S. economy.

In the offshore non-deliverable forwards, the one-month contract was at 62.31, while the three-month was at 63.11.

(Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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