Rouble hits 58 per dollar for first time since July 2015

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The rouble climbed to its strongest level since July 2015 on Monday morning, as the Russian Central Bank’s pledge to weaken the currency struggles to convince markets.

The rouble had already been appreciating as oil prices have recovered over the last twelve months, and growing optimism since Donald Trump’s victory in the US election has helped it become the best-performing emerging market currency since the vote, up just shy of 10 per cent.

President Trump’s calls for a normalisation of relations with Russia raised hopes of a relaxation of economic sanctions and encouraged international investors to return to the country.

The central bank has promised to spend more than Rbs113bn ($1.9bn) on foreign currency purchases this month to help slow the rouble’s climb, in an effort to boost the government’s spending power.

However, economists have been sceptical the bank would be able to have a big impact on the currency, and it has continued to rise a further 1.6 per cent since the announcement, including a 0.5 per cent rise this morning to take it to 57.99 per dollar.

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