The rupee tumbled 40 paise to 75.33 in early trade on Monday, tracking surge in crude prices amid escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine At the interbank forex market, the local currency opened sharply lower against the dollar. It was moving in a tight range of 75.78 and 75.70. In early deals, it was trading at 75.73, registering a fall of 40 paise over its previous close In the previous session, the rupee had gained 27 paise to settle at 75.33 against the US dollar The dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, was trading 0.78 percent higher at 97.37 Global oil benchmark Brent crude futures surged 4.24 percent to USD 102.08 per barrel Meanwhile, in a dramatic escalation of tensions in eastern Europe, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his nuclear forces to be on high alert in response to what he called “aggressive statements by leading NATO powers over the Ukraine conflict.

On the domestic equity market front, the 30-share Sensex was trading 709.15 points or 1.27 percent lower at 55,149.37, while the broader NSE Nifty fell 198.15 points or 1.19 percent to 16,460.25 Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in the capital market on Friday, as they offloaded shares worth Rs 4,470.70 crore, as per stock exchange data.

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