Analysts have predicted the end of the “August curse” of the ruble


August 2016 may be the first for ten years, when the ruble weakens against the dollar, on the contrary, will be strengthened, said the U.S. investment Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The peak of the negative impact of seasonal factors is behind us, the Russian currency could strengthen due to higher prices of oil, stated in article of the Bank “Russia: the end of the August curse?”

“We believe that the effect of any significant negative seasonal factors that are putting pressure on the ruble, mitigated against the background of favorable trends in emerging markets and, in particular, a rapid recovery in oil prices. Considering that we increased our preliminary forecast for the price of Brent crude at the end of the year to $52 per barrel, we assume that the ruble may continue,” analysts at BofA-ML.

At the same time, the dollar may fluctuate, due to lower revenues on the current account and the continued easing of monetary policy of the Central Bank. BofA-ML maintains forecast at the rate of 65 rubles per dollar at the end of the year.

The price per barrel Brent oil on August 18 exceeded $50 for the first time since July 5. Analysts at BofA-ML predict the cost of a barrel of Brent at $52 in late 2016, and at the end of the first quarter of 2017 price increase to $55.

The season of dividend payment is almost completed, the shareholders have already converted their dividends in rubles, so the ruble will be more tied to the dynamics of oil prices, recalls managing research and analysis debt markets PSB Alexander Polyutov. Support the ruble, according to analysts, may cause the approaching tax period: until the end of August, companies will have to pay about 750 billion rubles to the budget.

At the same time, the expert pointed out that the ruble began to affect the geopolitical factors. In particular, recent high-profile statements by heads of Russia and Ukraine on the situation around the Crimea led to the depreciation of the ruble relative to other currencies. “There is a sense that the strengthening of the ruble dynamics behind oil prices because of the geopolitical factor, so the Russian currency may not show significant growth,” — says the analyst. According to him, another negative factor for the ruble is a growing budget deficit. “Investors already consider this in their forecasts of the ruble in the fall of 2016. In particular, we believe that the dollar may rise to 69 RUB. by the end of the year,” he said.

This week, the foreign shareholders of Russian companies are actively converting their dividends into the currency, adds an analyst at Nordea Bank Denis Davydov. “Because of this, we saw that the strengthening of the ruble was not as significant as it should be. With the price of oil at $51 per barrel, the dollar was worth 63 rubles.”, — he said, noting that the strengthening of the ruble also prevents the “Ukrainian factor.” On the background of loud statements in the last two days non-residents are gradually coming out of ruble assets, he added.

He predicted that next week the dollar will trade at the level of 63-65 RUB “barring a new geopolitical developments, the ruble may strengthen even more, the more that starts the tax period. If the conflict with Ukraine continues, the dollar may cross the mark of 65 rubles,” — said Davydov.

Previously, a number of economists and analysts have expressed the opinion that the ruble looks overrated due to the payment of dividends. In particular, Sberbank CIB believe that the fair rate of the dollar at current average prices of oil is 72 RUB

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