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The ruble went to three-week highs to 73.8 per dollar

The combination of heightened risk appetite, falling dollar and oil rally did the trick, pushing the ruble to new nearly three-week highs in Tuesday’s trading. The dollar / ruble pair touched the level of 73.84 rubles. at the beginning of the session, after which it rebounded slightly, testing the level of 74 rubles. before the opening of trading in Europe. Russian stock indices started the session with modest gains, refraining from a more confident rally amid mixed dynamics in European and US futures, which may signal some cooling in demand for the purchase of high-yielding assets. The current strengthening of the ruble looks logical and justified, especially given that oil is trading at highs January last year outside the level of 61 dollars a barrel. With the scale of the oil rally, the rise of our currency could have been more aggressive if not for geopolitical risks. However, serious blows can hardly be expected from this front. Even if the European Union adopts new restrictions on Moscow, they will most likely be soft. A more significant threat comes from Washington, which is more aggressive, but here it should be remembered that the geopolitical risk premium has already been taken into account to a greater extent in the current ruble exchange rate. However, this does not mean that the “Russian” will continue to strengthen its positions unhindered. A new wave of sanctions rhetoric is still capable of limiting the bullish potential of the ruble, while in the shorter term, a possible correction in oil prices poses a threat, as Brent looks overbought, and the forthcoming statistics on oil and oil products in the United States may disappoint. At the same time, the ruble is supported by the resumption of the dollar’s decline in anticipation of the approval of the fiscal stimulus package and the reduction of Mifnin’s interventions within the framework of the budget rule ._________________ Mikhail Kogan, Head of Analytical Research, Higher School of Financial Management

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