The Indian rupee fell to an all-time low against the US dollar by breaching the 69-rupee barrier in early trade on Thursday with consistent demand for the US currency from banks and importers.

At the interbank foreign-exchange market, the rupee opened at 68.87 per dollar against 68.61 previously and sank to 69.10 in morning deals, falling by 49 paise, NDTV Profit reports.

The rupee has been under pressure due to demand from oil refiners, as the US is exerting pressure on other countries to end all oil imports from Iran by November, which has led to a rise in global oil prices.

The Reserve Bank of India, the country’s central bank, is finding it tough to contain the falling rupee. The current-account deficit is widening and a weak global investment climate, coupled with policy paralysis in New Delhi, is discouraging foreign investors to India.

Bourses adversely hit

The falling rupee also took a toll on Indian stock markets. The Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex fell by more than 90 points in early trade on Thursday after the rupee sank to a lifetime low, Press Trust of India reported.

The 30-share index, which had lost 272.93 points in the previous session, fell further by 90.26 points, or 0.25%, to 35,126.85.

The National Stock Exchange Nifty also dropped by 31.30 points, or 0.29%, to 10,640.10.