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Russian rouble, stocks edge lower as oil prices slip

Reuters · 03/10/2023 02:27
Russian rouble, stocks edge lower as oil prices slip

- The Russian rouble edged lower on Friday on lower oil prices and this week's reduced foreign currency sales by the finance ministry, with market players adopting a cautious position before U.S. labour market statistics and the weekend.

At 0718 GMT, the rouble was 0.2% weaker against the dollar at 75.97 RUBUTSTN=MCX and had lost 0.2% to trade at 80.39 per euro EURRUBTN=MCX. It had shed 0.3% against the yuan to 10.88 CNYRUBTOM=MCX.

The finance ministry this week decreased its daily foreign exchange sales, in China's yuan, to 5.4 billion roubles ($71.15 million) for the upcoming month, down from 8.9 billion roubles, which should reduce support for the rouble.

The yuan's share in Russia's import settlements in 2022 jumped to 23% from 4%, Russia's central bank said on Thursday, also a rise in the Chinese currency's share in exchange trading in February.

Brent crude oil LCOc1, a global benchmark for Russia's main export, was down 0.7% at $81.10 a barrel.

Lower oil prices and the lack of extra support from Russian exporters for the rouble could see the Russian currency weaken past 76 per dollar going into the weekend, said Bogdan Zvarich, Banki.ru chief analyst.

Investors were also keeping an eye on the U.S. jobs report on Friday and its impact on the policy of the Federal Reserve, which this week warned of higher and potentially faster rate hikes.

Russian stock indexes were lower.

The dollar-denominated RTS index .IRTS was down 0.8% at 943.4 points. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index .IMOEX was 0.7% lower at 2,275.0 points.

For Russian equities guide see RU/EQUITY

For Russian treasury bonds see 0#RUTSY=MM

($1 = 75.9000 roubles)

(Reporting by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Bradley Perrett)