Romania’s Leu Gains to Seven-Month High on Ponta’s New Cabinet

The leu strengthened to the highest level in more than seven months after Prime Minister Victor Ponta won parliamentary backing for his new cabinet on Dec. 21, boosting investors’ confidence in Romania’s political stability post elections.

The currency gained 0.5 percent to 4.4205 per euro by 4:30 p.m. in Bucharest, its highest level since May 10. The leu has appreciated 2.5 percent since Romania went to polls on Dec. 9, making it the best performer among emerging-market currencies tracked by Bloomberg.

Ponta’s new government, his second this year, won 402 votes out of a total of 588. The prime minister is also counting on a two-thirds majority in Parliament to pass a 2013 budget and start talks with the International Monetary Fund and the European Union in January to renew the nation’s stability accord.

“The new cabinet and the improved perception of stability in the country is a good signal for the leu,” Ponta said while addressing ministers at a Dec. 22 meeting in Bucharest. “We can see that the euro-leu exchange rate is at the lowest level since we formed our first cabinet” in May, he said.

Yields on Romania’s 2019 euro-denominated bonds declined one basis point, or 0.01 percentage point to 3.98 percent today, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

To contact the reporter on this story: Irina Savu in Bucharest at isavu@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at jagomez@bloomberg.net

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