Dollar falls to nine-month low

The weighted average dollar exchange rate dropped RUR 0.06 to RUR 31.32 by the end of this morning's trading session on the Russian currency market. This was the most significant strengthening of the ruble observed during a trading session since March 13, which was almost three weeks ago. As a result, the dollar rate returned to the nine-month low, to the level registered at the end of May and the beginning of June 2002. Experts from domestic commercial banks noted that the dollar had dropped today amid a very favorable situation with ruble liquidity and plenty of ruble resources on the market. As of the beginning of business on April 1, the volume of ruble balances at correspondent accounts of Russian commercial banks increased by 28.5bn rubles (about $908m) in Russia and 23.5bn rubles (about $749m) in Moscow. These developments were expected to lead to a rise in the dollar rate, however, the Central Bank decided not to speculate for a rise in the dollar and, on the contrary, promoted the dollar reduction.

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