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The Russian rouble hit a more than one-week low against the dollar on Thursday before recovering some ground, waiting for significant support as a favourable tax period draws to a close.

At 0730 GMT, the rouble was 0.1% stronger against the dollar at 96.84, having fallen to 97.1350 at market opening.

It had gained 0.1% to trade at 101.82 versus the euro . It had shed 0.3% against the yuan to 13.25.

Month-end tax payments, that usually see exporters convert foreign currency revenues to pay local liabilities, support the rouble, but the currency can slide once the period has passed.

The rouble has also now lost the temporary support of higher sales of foreign currency than usual by the central bank, which was selling around 21.4 billion roubles ($221.3 million) of yuan a day until the start of this week.

“Today is the end of the period of tax payments to the budget and exporters may significantly reduce the volume of sales of foreign currency revenues,” said Alor Broker’s Alexei Antonov in a note.

“Therefore we expect rouble weakening, traditional for the last days of the month.”

Russian rouble hovers near 96 vs dollar

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia’s main export, was down 0.7% at $97.24 a barrel. Russian stock indexes were higher.

The dollar-denominated RTS index was up 0.7% to 1,005.7 points.

The rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.8% higher at 3,091.5 points.

No. 2 lender VTB on Thursday said consecutive interest rate hikes had seriously damaged Russian banks’ prospects, anticipating a sharp drop in the sector’s profits next year after a bumper 2023.

VTB’s shares were steady, underperforming the wider market.

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