Bloomberg News

Ruble Drops Most in Week on Rate-Cut Bets, Declining Oil Price

October 07, 2013

The ruble fell the most in more than a week against Bank Rossii’s target basket of currencies as oil plunged and investors bet inflation slowing to a 13-month low will allow the central bank to cut interest rates.

Russia’s currency depreciated 0.3 percent against Bank Rossii’s target basket of dollars and euros to 37.4571 by 12:53 p.m. in Moscow, heading for the steepest one-day decline since Sept. 26. The yield on ruble-denominated benchmark debt due February 2027 rose two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 7.64 percent.

Consumer prices increased 6.1 percent from a year earlier in September, compared with 6.5 percent in August, the Federal Statistics Service said on Oct. 4. Russia’s central bank, which is due to hold a monetary policy meeting on Oct. 14, has kept the main lending rates unchanged for the past year as inflation remained above its target range of 5 percent to 6 percent.

The September inflation data make the possibility of a rate cut “increasingly more possible as we head into year-end,” Tradition analysts said in an e-mailed note. A deterioration in the current account surplus means the ruble will probably underperform in coming sessions, they said.

Russia’s current-account surplus shrank to $1.1 billion in the third quarter, compared with $5.83 billion a year ago, Bank Rossii said Oct. 3. Net capital outflow from Russia was $12.9 billion over the three months through September, compared with $7 billion in the previous quarter.

Oil Declines

Crude, Russia’s chief export earner, fell 1.2 percent to $108.14 per barrel in London, heading for the lowest close in a week. West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 1.2 percent to $102.59 as output in the Gulf of Mexico resumed after a tropical storm weakened and the U.S. came closer to breaching its debt ceiling.

The failure of U.S. lawmakers to pass a budget and avert a government shutdown last week is fueling concern they won’t agree on raising the $16.7 trillion debt limit. House Speaker John Boehner said on ABC yesterday that he doesn’t intend to let the government default.

An index of 20 emerging-market currencies compiled by Bloomberg snapped five days of gains, declining 0.2 percent to 94.3038. The ruble weakened 0.2 percent against the dollar to 32.2545 and dropped 0.5 percent against the euro to 43.8250.

To contact the reporter on this story: Vladimir Kuznetsov in Moscow at vkuznetsov2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Wojciech Moskwa at wmoskwa@bloomberg.net


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