The rupee appreciated by 20 paise to 69.14 against the US dollar in opening trade Friday, driven by sustained foreign fund inflows and higher opening of domestic equities. The rupee opened at 69.28 at the interbank forex market, then gained further ground and touched 69.14, displaying gains of 20 paise over its last close. The rupee on Thursday had strengthened by 20 paise to close at 69.34 against the US dollar. Forex dealers said, selling of the American currency by exporters and positive opening in domestic equities supported the rupee.
Fresh foreign fund inflows also supported the rupee, they added. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained net buyers in the capital markets, putting in Rs 1,482.99 crore on a net basis Thursday, as per provisional data. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, slipped 0.01 per cent to USD 67.22 per barrel. Meanwhile, the benchmark BSE Sensex was trading higher by 148.89 points, or 0.39 per cent, at 37,903.78; while the NSE Nifty was trading at 11,374.45, higher by 31.20 points, or 0.28 per cent.