Russian Rouble Firms as MOEX Begins Longer Trading Hours

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MOSCOW, March 1 Reuters The Russian rouble firmed on Monday, pricing in rising oil prices, as the Moscow Exchange opened three hours earlier than previously in a move to capture more Asian investors.

At 0651 GMT, the rouble was 0.6 stronger against the dollar at 74.18 and had gained 0.4 to trade at 89.73 versus the euro.

The Moscow Exchange started trading foreign currency, gold and derivatives three hours earlier from March 1, opening at 0400 GMT and extending its trading day to 17 hours to cover more time zones and boost liquidity.

Russias largest bourse aims to attract Asian investors with extended trading hours, while also betting on an increase in retail clients, its official told Reuters in an interview.

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russias main export, was up 2 at 65.68 a barrel, supporting Russian assets and highlighting a political discount that the market has priced in. In early 2020, when oil prices last traded at current levels, the rouble was at around 61 versus the dollar and 68 against the euro.

Russian stock indexes rose. The dollardenominated RTS index was up 1.3 to 1,430.8 points. The roublebased MOEX Russian index was 0.6 higher at 3,366.7 points.

Reporting by Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Toby Chopra

Source Reuters

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