October 24, 2018 / 8:14 AM / a month ago

Russian rouble down as oil prices fall to six week lows

MOSCOW, Oct 24 (Reuters) - The Russian rouble eased on Wednesday as oil prices fell to six weeks lows amid supply glut worries.

At 0738 GMT, the rouble was 0.16 percent weaker against the dollar at 65.61 and had lost 0.08 percent to trade at 75.02 versus the euro.

Oil prices slumped as much as 5 percent on Tuesday after Saudi Arabia said it would make up for supply disruptions from U.S. sanctions targeting Iran’s petroleum exports from next month.

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia’s main export, extended falls on Wednesday and was down 0.17 percent at $76.30 a barrel.

Restraining a deeper fall of the Russian currency were foreign currency sales by exporters who need to pay taxes, analysts at Rosbank, a subsidiary of Societe Generale, said in a note.

Usually exporters buy the currency in order to pay local taxes. The tax payments period runs for the second half of a month.

“By the end of the week the rouble has a chance to return to the range of 66.0-66.5 against the dollar if the current levels of prices on the oil market sustain,” Rosbank analysts said.

Russian stock indexes were up.

The dollar-denominated RTS index was up 0.77 percent to 1,115.52 points. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.78 percent higher at 2,323.43 points.

For Russian equities guide see

For Russian treasury bonds see (Reporting by Polina Nikolskaya Editing by Andrey Kuzmin, Richard Balmforth)

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