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Mumbai, Sep 16  The rupee tumbled by 68 paise to 71.60 against the US currency in early trade on Monday, as a sharp jump in global crude oil prices dampened investor sentiments.

Forex traders said, market participants were concerned as the drone attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities has stroked fiscal slippage concerns.

Crude oil prices witnessed a sharp spike after a weekend drone attack on Saudi Arabia cut into global energy supplies and halved the kingdom’s oil production.

Saturday’s explosions set off fires that engulfed the Abqaiq plant, the world’s largest oil processing facility, and nearby Khurais, which hosts a massive oil field.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, jumped 9.86 per cent to USD 66.16 per barrel on Monday.

At the interbank foreign exchange, the rupee opened at 71.54 then fell to 71.60 against the US dollar, showing a decline of 68 paise over its previous closing.

The Indian rupee on Friday had closed at 70.92 against the US dollar.

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