inr-bank-notes - INR
  • Indian Rupee (INR) edges lower but still set for solid weekly gains
  • Foreign exchange reserves rise
  • US Dollar (USD) storms higher post NFP report
  • 379k jobs created in February vs 182,000 expected

The US Dollar Indian Rupee (USD/INR) exchange rate is soaring higher, snapping a four day winning streak. The pair settled -0.3% on Thursday at 72.73. At 16:15 UTC, USD/INR trades +0.67% at 73.21. Despite today’s gains, the pair is on track for its largest weekly loss since August.

According to the Reserve Bank of India, the country’s foreign exchange reserves increased by $169 million to $583.865 billion. Reserve had been steadily increasing and touched an all time high of $590.185 billion for the week ending 29th January.

Oil prices soared to the highest level in almost 14 months after OPEC defied market expectations and left oil output unchanged. At the start of this week expectations had been for the group of major oil producers to release around 1.5 million barrels per day more of oil into the market.

The US Dollar is rallying versus the Rupee and its major peers on Friday after the US non-farm payroll came in significantly ahead of expectations. The US Dollar Index which measures the greenback versus a basket of 6 major peers now trades 0.4% higher on the day at 92.00 a three and a half month high.

The US Labour Department’s closely watched non-farm payroll report showed that 379,000 new jobs were added in February. This was significantly ahead of the 182,000 that analysts had penciled in. January’s 49,000 jobs added was also upwardly revised to 166,000. The unemployment rate edged lower once again to 6.2% from 6.3%, whilst wage growth remained stable at 5.3%.

The solid rebound in the US jobs market in February could well be just the start of a new trend. As the vaccine programme accelerates, more states will go easing covid restrictions over the coming weeks and month sparking the economies back into life. Consequently, the expectation is that US jobs numbers will continue improving through the first and second quarter.