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MOSCOW: The Russian rouble was steady against the dollar and near its weakest level since late July on Tuesday, while Russia's leading banks, Sberbank and VTB, outperformed the broader market after posting sound financial results.

At 0800 GMT, the rouble was flat on the day at 73.62 versus the dollar, looking for a new momentum amid the summer lull after touching 73.73 on Monday, a level last seen on July 29.

Versus the euro, the rouble gained 0.1% at 86.36.

Russian rouble hits more than 3-week high; OFZ auctions, Fed in focus

The rouble stabilised recently, supported by inflows of foreign funds into Russian OFZ treasury bonds amid expectations that the central bank's monetary tightening cycle could be close to its end.

However, lingering geopolitical concerns and volatility in oil prices limited room for gains in the currency.

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia's main export, was up 1.5% at $70.10 a barrel, recouping some of the losses in the previous session when prices hit a three-week low. Still, gains are likely to be limited by concerns that rising COVID-19 cases and restrictions in China will dent fuel demand.

Russian stock indexes were up.

The dollar-denominated RTS index rose 0.5% to 1,639.4 points, and the rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.5% higher at 3,854.6 points.

"We expect the situation on the Russian stock market to be favourable for banks as well as gas and fertiliser producers this week," Alfa Bank said in a note.

Shares in Russia's largest lender Sberbank and the second-biggest bank VTB were up 1% and 1.2%, respectively, after both state-run lenders posted strong earnings under Russian accounting standards.

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