Ruble Declines for Fourth Day as Brent Dips Below $100 a Barrel

The ruble weakened for a fourth day against the central bank’s target basket of currencies as oil in London fell to below $100 a barrel.

The ruble declined less than 0.1 percent against Bank Rossii’s dollar-euro basket, extending yesterday’s 1 percent drop, to 35.7682 by 2:48 p.m. in Moscow. The Russian currency appreciated 0.2 percent against the dollar to 31.3825.

“Oil is the main news maker,” Artem Roschin, a foreign exchange trader at Aljba Alliance LLC in Moscow, said by phone. “The market is watching whether it stalls, continues to decline or reverse.”

Brent oil sank below $100 a barrel for the first time since July, dropping 0.8 percent to $99.87 a barrel amid signs global economic growth may slow. The ZEW Center for European Economic Research in Mannheim said today its index of investor and analyst expectations, which aims to predict economic developments six months in advance, fell to 36.3 from a three- year high of 48.5 in March.

The yield on benchmark OFZ bonds due February 2027 rose two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 7.21 percent before a Finance Ministry announcement of yield guidance for tomorrow’s auctions of securities. The government plans to offer 20 billion rubles ($637 million) of notes due January 2023 and 10 billion rubles of OFZs due January 2018.

“Even if the issuer offers premium, people will abstain from buying sovereign bonds in this volatile environment,” Ekaterina Leonova, an analyst with OAO Alfa Bank, said in a note to clients.

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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