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Russian Ruble Gains 3% on the First Day of 2023

On the first full trading day of the new year, the Russian Ruble advanced by more than 3% against the U.S. dollar, rebounding from six-month lows at the end of 2022.

Russian Ruble Banknote
Russian Ruble Banknote

The Ruble traded up 3.4% at 69.68 against the U.S. dollar and up 1.9% against the euro to 74.77. The Ruble was 2.2% stronger than the Chinese yuan, trading at 10.23 in Moscow.

Russian Ruble Falls 17% in December

The world's best-performing currency for much of last year, the Russian Ruble lost 17% in December due to Western moves to introduce a price cap and an EU embargo on Russian oil exports. Alor Broker analysts expect a reversal of these trends if the geopolitical background does not interfere. They expect major exporters to start selling foreign exchange earnings accumulated over the holidays and investors to sell down dollars bought for protection.

Low Trading Volumes in Russian Markets

Russian markets saw record low trading volumes during extended start-of-year holidays in the first week of January, partly due to the departure of Western institutional investors from the Russian markets last year. The Ruble and stocks saw little change amid the low liquidity, with large corporates and retail investors that drive Russia's FX markets and the stock market, respectively, away from their desks.

On Monday, Russian stocks followed the Ruble higher. The dollar-denominated RTS index jumped 3.9% to 979.1 points, largely due to the currency effect, while the Ruble-based MOEX Russian index advanced 0.4% to 2,164.6 points.