The ruble, which behaved in recent weeks and even months very confident, now suddenly faltered. On the stock exchange the national currency suddenly fell below 65 rubles to the dollar. However, after a few hours the losses were recouped and the rate returned to normal. What it was: the random whim of the market, or the first harbinger of what we are waiting for a devaluation? We asked leading economists.
photo: Dmitry Katerinov
Igor NIKOLAEV, the Professor of the Higher school of economy:
– Fall is coming and this is the time of year when we traditionally raise doubts about the strength of the ruble. This time on the psychological seasonal factors imposed pending us political and economic events on the national currency is really affected.
Many entrenched the idea that the ruble will “hold” before the election. And there is much truth in that. For the authorities it is important to perform this task. But the closer September, the sharper the question: what then? And expectations of weakening influence on the market right now, so the national currency is sagging prematurely.
And in recent days there is a very important information about what will happen with oil. There has been a shift in shale production in the United States. There was again steady rises in the number of drilling rigs. End of the period, when it seemed that the prospects for shale extraction at low prices sad. Now it is evident that kancevica adapted, and $40 a barrel they are quite satisfied. They are ready to increase production, and it has already affected the world oil market. And on the ruble is also reflected.
Rooted in the past and another factor, which supported the ruble in recent months. I’m talking about the politics of devolatization Bank assets. In the spring of reserve requirements on foreign currency deposits was increased sharply. This is actually a restrictive measure to attract foreign currency deposits. It has led to the fact that the ruble stood firmly, but the government can not do that with banks forever. It’s starting to negatively impact on their financial condition. We went to the natural boundary of devolatization Bank assets, the need to cancel such a policy has come. Serious impact on the course.
There are other well-known factors: the economic crisis and so on… All of them together forced to give a prediction: 80 rubles per dollar by the end of the year.
– From the point of view of budget execution such a course even beneficial to the state…
– From a political point of view, now the most important task is to maintain the current ruble exchange rate until September 18. And then you can sacrifice the ruble in order to fulfill its social obligations to citizens. Many understand it now, hence, expectations of weakening of the ruble.
Unfortunately, we have all the usual: the end of August and fall are unfounded expectation of big problems…
Mikhail KRUTIKHIN, economic analyst:
The relatively high price of oil, is held by the strange and unsubstantiated expectations, if will happen some freezing its production of exporters. But I have a pessimistic point of view: it will not. Because all the major participants in the process are driven as much oil as possible, at the maximum, and reduce rates are not collected. Production increases and consumption does not increase. I think that in the near future, already in the third quarter we will see a significant decline in oil prices.
– How significant?
– Try to guess the exact number makes no sense, but apparently the average price in 2016 will be approximately $45. That is, at certain moments of the autumn months, I exclude the price drop to $40. The vibrations are strong, but on average we will see a sustainable depreciation of the hydrocarbons.
– And what to expect from “black gold” in the longer term? There is a possibility of growth rates?
– I think that some increase in oil prices we will see in the coming year. Projected long-awaited increase in its consumption due to economic recovery. But I very much fear that production will continue to increase at a faster pace, it will not reduce the gap between supply and demand, and in the end we will not see the bonus, which I would like: a price increase will be, but small. On average, oil prices in the next year will be $5 more expensive than the past year.
– How do you assess the prospects of the ruble to the end of the year?
– Three or four months ago at a meeting of the group of economists with the audience I made a prediction that by year-end exchange rate may be 100 rubles per dollar. Now I have great interest observe spoken and unspoken efforts to maintain the ruble in its current state. They are obviously successful. But I have a suspicion that after the elections on 18 September, those efforts will stop, and the ruble is going down. And to what level of you will see with time.
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