The rupee appreciated 6 paise to 73.52 against the US dollar in opening trade on Thursday as sustained foreign fund inflows and positive domestic equities strengthened investor sentiment. Traders said the weakness of the American currency in the overseas market and optimism surrounding the US stimulus aid package also supported the domestic unit.
At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 73.52 against the greenback registering a rise of 6 paise over its previous close. On Wednesday, the rupee appreciated 5 paise to close at 73.58 against the US dollar.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, was trading 0.44 per cent lower at 90.05. "The dollar recovered from the lows of the session, but still ended weak in a choppy trading session after the Federal Reserve disappointed investors expecting a shift toward more purchases of longer-dated bonds," Reliance Securities said in a research note.
The US Federal Reserve pledged to keep its benchmark interest rate near zero until an economic recovery is complete. On the domestic equity market front, the 30-share BSE benchmark Sensex was trading 84.80 points higher at 46,751.26, and the broader NSE Nifty advanced 34.50 points to 13,717.20.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers in the capital market as they purchased shares worth Rs 1,981.77 crore on a net basis on Wednesday, according to exchange data. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, were trading at USD 51.52 per barrel, higher by 0.86 per cent.