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RUB: tax week


On Friday, RUB closed the week on a stronger footing; however, trading flows remained fairly low. At the end of the week, RUB firmed 0.7% against USD to close at 63.71. The spot Brent crude price declined 1.4% at the end of last week to USD 45.9/bbl, yet negative sentiment was partially offset by the rebound in crude futures (CO1 was up 0.6%). In light of this, RUB outperformed commodity-based and EM currencies. In particular, NOK closed 1.4% in red on Friday, whilst NGN retreated 0.2%. The EM FX index slipped 0.4-0.6% with TRY in particular down 1.1%. We think exporters continued selling hard currency revenues on Friday to meet tax payments, which provided support to the FX spot market. To recap, VAT and MET are due today. Crude oil is currently trading on a softer footing (Brent opened near 0.7-1.0% in the red), while the geopolitical risk factor might come to the forefront this week, as EU foreign ministers called an unscheduled meeting for Thursday to discuss the situation in Ukraine.

Maxim Korovin, Tatiana Zueva
VTB Capital analysts


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