Yesterday’s session saw one of the lowest USDRUB volatilities in many days, while trading flows remained subdued with total turnover in the MICEX of just USD 2.8bn. Hence, for most of the day USDRUB traded in a range of 62.20-62.40. However, RUB firmed in the evening and closed 1.0% stronger against USD at 61.89. The Brent spot price moved up 0.3%, but futures (CO1) rallied 2.5% to USD 61.0/bbl, partially reversing the drop from previous days. As we have argued before, with the current level of crude, RUB has decent support to consolidate in the 60-63 range. If the average oil price firms up at the USD 60/bbl level, then USDRUB would move below 60.0, we think. Compared with peers, RUB continued outperforming as the EM FX index nudged down 0.2%; TRY and BRL were down 0.7% and 1.2%, respectively, while NOK and NGN weakened 0.2-0.3% against USD.
Separately, we highlight that banks borrowed USD 1.2bn from the CBR at the one-week FX repo auction at an average rate of 0.64%. That would partially cover the scheduled FX repo maturities for this week, but banks’ overall debt to the CBR under the FX refinancing instruments would increase almost USD 1.0bn to USD 31.8bn today. Thanks to the injections of USD liquidity, the spread between the overnight FX swap rate and RUONIA is now staying positive, which is supportive for the FX spot market.