Ruble Retreats to Two-Month Low on Crude Oil, Greek Debt Concern

Updated on

The ruble weakened to the lowest level in two months as oil, Russia’s chief export earner, dropped and investors sold riskier assets after European officials delayed a decision on Greek aid.

The Russian currency depreciated 0.5 percent to 31.7620 against the dollar at the 7 p.m. close in Moscow, the lowest since Sept. 06. It lost 0.3 percent versus the euro to 40.3402 and was 0.4 percent down against the central bank’s euro-dollar target basket.

European leaders put off until next week a decision on how to cover Greece’s additional funding needs, stoking concern the debt crisis will drag on and curbing appetite for emerging-market currencies and stocks. Urals crude dropped 0.6 percent to $107.06 per barrel. Crude and natural gas account for about 50 percent of Russia’s government revenue.

“The delay on the Greek bailout decision by Europe pushed the Russian currency out of the previous range of 31.25-31.60 rubles per dollar,” Sergey Fishgoyt, deputy head of foreign exchange at Otkritie Financial Corp. in Moscow, said by e-mail.

The Russian central bank’s decision last week to leave its key interest rates unchanged has contributed to the ruble’s decline, he said.

Bank Rossii kept rates on hold on Nov. 9 after a surprise increase in September. Consumer-price growth slowed to 6.4 percent as of Nov. 6 from a year earlier, Bank Rossii said. That’s down from 6.5 percent in October.

The extra yield that investors demand to own Russia’s dollar bonds over U.S. Treasuries rose one basis point to 199, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s EMBI Global Index. An index of five-year government bond yields was little changed at 7.0660 percent.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE