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Russian rouble weakens towards 61 vs dollar


This content was produced in Russia where the law restricts coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine

MOSCOW, Nov 21 (Reuters) - The rouble fell towards 61 against the dollar on Monday as oil prices hovering near their lowest since late September outweighed the impact of a favourable month-end tax period on the Russian currency in early trade.

At 0727 GMT, the rouble was 0.6% weaker against the dollar at 60.77. It had gained 0.4% to trade at 62.20 versus the euro, a one-week high, and had firmed 0.1% against the yuan to 8.48.

Trading near the upper end of the 60-61 range due to a weak external background, the rouble may strengthen towards 60 later in the session, said Promsvyazbank analysts in a note.

An upcoming tax period that usually sees export-focused firms convert foreign exchange revenues into roubles to pay domestic liabilities will support the rouble, said Dmitry Polevoy, head of investment at Locko Invest.

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia's main export, was down 0.5% at $87.2 a barrel, after dropping below $86 a barrel in the previous session for the first time since Sept. 28.

The Group of Seven nations and Australia plan to cap prices of Russian sea-borne oil shipments effective Dec. 5, with a second cap on oil products kicking in Feb. 5.

The unprecedented price ceiling aims to block Russia from profiting from a jump in oil prices since sending tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine in February, while ensuring that Russian oil continues flowing to global markets after a European Union ban on Russian oil imports takes effect next month.

Polevoy said Russian oil revenues would remain at sufficient levels to ensure that the rouble only gradually weakens towards the end of this year and the start of the next.

Russian stock indexes were falling.

The dollar-denominated RTS index was down 0.9% to 1,136.5 points. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.7% lower at 2,191.8 points.

For Russian equities guide see

For Russian treasury bonds see (Reporting by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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