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Daily purchases of currency by Finance Ministry do not weaken ruble rate — Central Bank

March 06, 17:53 UTC+3
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MOSCOW, March 6. /TASS/. Daily transactions of the Finance’s Ministry on the currency market have not led to weakening of the Russian currency, the Department of Research and Forecasts at the Central Bank said in a bulletin on Monday.

"The Russian ruble rate against the dollar in February rose by 3.1%, despite the fact that oil prices practically did not change by the end of the month. The strengthening took place on the background of the beginning of currency purchases by the Finance Ministry as part of the transitional fiscal rule. Contrary to expectations, daily purchases of currency by the Finance Ministry did not lead to the weakening of the ruble," the document says. 

In February 2017, Russia’s Ministry of Finance started buying and selling foreign currency on the domestic foreign exchange market. The Central bank was appointed as the agent to buy the currency on the market and to transfer it to the Treasury account.

The volume of transactions on purchase/sale of foreign currency will depend on the amount of oil and gas revenues of the federal budget.

While the actual price of Urals oil exceeds the level of $40 per barrel, the Finance Ministry will conduct operations on purchase of foreign currency for the sum of additional oil and gas revenues. In the case of lower Urals oil price, the Ministry will carry out operations on sale of foreign currency in the amount of shortfall in oil and gas revenues. 

Inflation 

Inflation in Russia is declining quicker than forecast dynamics and the probability of reaching the 4% target at the turn of 2017 becomes higher, the Bank of Russia said on Monday:

"Inflation starts declining slightly higher than forecast dynamics of the Bank of Russia against the background of favorable foreign economic and financial conditions and the moderately tough monetary policy".

"Inflation deviation from the target path declines significantly in February, resulting in material growth of probability of reaching the 4% target at the turn of 2017," the Bank of Russia said.

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