The Ministry of Finance cooled the ardor of the ruble “bears” (September 23, 2022)

Over the past day, the expectations of financial analysts regarding the future of the ruble have changed significantly. If earlier most experts expected the exchange rate of the Russian currency to be in the region of 65-70 or more per dollar at the end of the year, now the forecasts are shifting in favor of a stronger ruble.

On Tuesday, when information appeared that the Ministry of Finance plans to increase the fiscal burden on exporters, there were timid suggestions that the authorities intended to replenish the budget at the expense of commodity companies, and not as a result of an artificial devaluation of the ruble. And so it turned out.

The explanatory note of the Ministry of Finance to the draft budget says that next year it is not planned to replenish the National Security Fund at the expense of additional oil and gas revenues. It was the risk that the budget rule was about to start working (the Ministry of Finance did not rule out earlier that the first purchases of foreign currency would begin as early as September) that put the main pressure on the ruble.

Many investors bought the dollar for medium-term purposes, hoping to earn 10-15% (or more) by the end of the year on the devaluation of the ruble. Now its dynamics will be determined solely by market factors, that is, the supply of foreign currency from exporters and the demand for it from imports.

At the same time, you have to pay for the storage of currency both in a brokerage account and in most banks. Given the absence of clearly visible drivers of the ruble’s depreciation, some investors began to throw off the “toxic currency”, which largely caused the ruble to strengthen in the last two days.

Today in the morning trading, the dollar-ruble pair descended to the area of ​​58.5, but so far it has not been possible to develop success due to oil falling below $90 per barrel. At the opening of the main trading at 10:00 Moscow time. about 59.3 rubles were given for the dollar, but after half an hour the dollar fell in price by 30 kopecks.

Today and on Monday, we can expect an increased supply of foreign currency from exporters who need to pay the budget for taxes, so the ruble has every chance to resume growth.

The short-term technical picture indicates a high chance of the ruble rising. “The current picture for USD/RUB indicates a high probability of breaking the flat trend of recent months with the dollar going down. The nearest levels of technical support may shift to 57.7 and further into the range of 55.5–55.9,” notes Vasily Karpunin from BCS.

Indeed, since the beginning of August, the dollar/ruble pair has been clamped in the range of 60-61, and all attempts to exit this corridor were short-term and did not end in success. Usually, after such a long flat, the movements are strong. Yesterday, the pair filed a serious bid to break down the channel, so at any moment large speculators can start playing for the ruble to rise.

Aleksey Antonov from Alora believes that the goal of the couple’s movement is now district 55, and does not exclude its achievement. Indeed, in the region of this mark there are annual lows for the dollar / ruble pair, and speculators will strive to drive the rate here.

More distant prospects for the ruble were outlined by Dmitry Polevoy from Loko-Invest: “Until the end of 2022, a range of 60–65/USD is possible, in September-October, for taxes/dividends, it may temporarily be less than 60/USD.”

However, Western sanctions, the political and economic situation in the world and the price dynamics of the main Russian exports can make adjustments to any forecasts.

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