MOSCOW: The rouble recovered ground against the dollar on Wednesday after falling sharply in the previous session as the government and central bank publicly disputed the need to extend capital controls that have been buttressing the Russian currency.
At 0758 GMT, the rouble was 0.5% stronger against the dollar at 88.27, having slid towards 89 in the previous session.
“We believe that the potential for the possible strengthening of the rouble remains,” said Promsvyazbank analyst Stanislav Duzhinsky.
“We expect that today the dollar will fix itself in the 87.5-88.5 range.”
The rouble had lost 0.1% to trade at 96.06 versus the euro and had firmed 0.1% against the yuan to 12.27.
The central bank on Tuesday opposed the government’s proposal to extend a requirement forcing exporters to convert foreign currency revenues, leaving the market looking for signals as to what may happen.
Anatoly Aksakov, head of the financial committee in Russia’s lower house of parliament, favoured an extension, but said the measures could subsequently be cancelled if the rouble strengthened too much, naming 90 to the dollar as optimal for the Russian economy.
“It is clear that we need a stable rouble, not a strong one or a weak one,” the TASS news agency quoted Aksakov as saying.
“Rouble stability is not just opposing its weakening, but opposition to strengthening risks too.”
Russian rouble firms as government proposes capital controls extension
Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia’s main export, was up 0.5% at $79.94 a barrel.
Russian stock indexes were mixed.