• Indian Rupee (INR) has seen strong run on rising interest rate expectations
  • India GDP data due on Friday
  • US Dollar (USD) declines on dovish Powell
  • US data broadly beat forecasts

The US Dollar Indian Rupee (USD/INR) exchange rate is moving higher on Thursday snapping a six day losing streak. The pair settled on Monday at 72.38. At 15:15 UTC, USD/INR trades +0.4% at 72.67.

The Indian Rupee and domestic Indian equities have seen a solid start to the year so far. The Indian Rupee has consistently strengthened versus the US Dollar and outperformed neighboring peers.

The recent strengthening of the Rupee has come as investors increasingly expect a more hawkish Reserve Bank of India.

This shift has been particularly notable since the Indian government announced an unexpectedly large budget worth 9.5% of fiscal 2021 GDP. This has helped boost growth expectations with foreign equity investments surging, boosting demand for the Rupee and lifting domestic equities.

All eyes are now on the fourth quarter GDP data due to be released tomorrow. The Indian economy is expected to rise 0.5% year on year, a solid rebound from the -7.5% contraction recorded in the third quarter. A better than forecast reading could strengthen the Indian Rupee further.

The US Dollar is trading higher versus the Rupee but is trading lower versus its major peers. The US Dollar Index, which measures the greenback against a basket of peers trades -0.4% at 89.81, below the key 90.00 level. This is an almost three year low after US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell reiterated the central bank’s easy monetary policy stance was here to stay.

Data wise, the second revision of Q4 GDP showed that the economy grew at 4.1% which is above the initial 4% reading. Durable goods order grew a better than expected 3.4% month on month in January. Meanwhile weekly jobless claims fell by more than expected  with claims rising 730,000 the lowest level in three months.