2 Apr 2010 18:05

Ruble posts more strong gains against dollar, CB lowers limit

MOSCOW. April 2 (Interfax) - The ruble posted strong against the dollar for the second day in a row, as oil prices rose and the capital markets stayed healthy, and strengthened so much against the dual currency basket that the Central Bank had to drop its support level for the first time since the middle of March.

The ruble gained 12.3 kopecks to 29.222 rubles/$1, and 13.04 kopecks to 39.5125 rubles/EUR1. The dollar fell to a two-week low of 29.19 rubles just before closing, and the euro ended the day at its lowest level for a week.

The dual currency basket ($0.55 and EUR0.45) fell 13 kopecks in value to 33.85 rubles, its lowest level since December 2008. The basket shed 12 kopecks yesterday and 28 kopecks this week as a whole.

The basket held at 33.9 rubles until mid-afternoon, before finding its new support level of 33.85 rubles.

The Central Bank lowered its official rates 22 kopecks to 29.2194 rubles/$1 and 9.52 kopecks to 39.6303 rubles/EUR1.

The dollar averaged down 19.24 kopecks to 29.2206 rubles/$1 in Today deals on the MICEX and 18.25 kopecks to 29.2188 rubles/$1 in Tom deals. MICEX trading volume was $3.477 billion, including $688.2 million in Today and $2.789 billion in Tom deals.

There were no Today deals in euro trading due to the Good Friday holiday. The euro fell 9.69 kopecks in Tom deals to 39.5802 rubles/EUR1 in volume of EUR155.5 million.

Money-market rates stayed low, with the indicative MosPrime Rate down 1 basis point to 3.46% p.a.