Ruble Strengthens for Second Day to Basket as Crude Oil Climbs

The ruble gained for a second day as climbing crude prices boosted appetite for the currency of the world’s biggest energy exporter.

The ruble rose 0.2 percent against Bank Rossii’s dollar- euro basket to 35.3620 by 3:36 p.m. in Moscow. The ruble gained 0.4 percent against the dollar to 31.1005, strengthening for the fourth session.

The ruble traded stronger than 35.65 to the basket for a second day. The regulator may intervene to curb declines when the currency declines beyond that point. Bank Rossii sold 2.21 billion rubles ($71 million) of foreign exchange on April 5, it said on its website today. Brent crude rose 0.7 percent in London trading to $105.34 per barrel. Oil and gas account for about 50 percent of Russia’s budget revenue.

“The stabilization on the oil market triggered profit taking among local players, who had earlier made bets on foreign currency strengthening,” Alexei Egorov, analyst at Nomos-Bank (NMOS), said by phone. “It’s possible that if the ruble continues to strengthen exporters may join, trying to take advantage of the relatively expensive dollar and converting revenue to pay taxes.”

The monthly tax period starts April 15 with insurance and pension fund contributions. The ruble was the second-worst performer against the dollar among emerging-market currencies last week, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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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