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RUB gets stuck at historic lows for long
RUB gets stuck at historic lows for long

The severe downturn in the global oil market has dealt a blow to commodity currencies, including the Russian ruble. Day after day, both oil quotes and commodity currencies are plumbing new depths. A few days ago, energy investors were appalled that Brent crude had plummeted below $30 a barrel. Analysts assumed that oil prices had reached the bottom. In fact, crude oil took a deeper nosedive. Both benchmark oil grades slumped to the lowest levels since 2003. Nothing boded ill, so the oil war between Saudi Arabia and Russia caught investors completely off-guard. The coronavirus outbreak scaled down global demand for crude oil. Thus, energy investors were full of hopes that the largest oil producers would support price stability and at least extend the ongoing oil production pact. However, the hopes were battered. Russia rejected Saudi Arabia’s proposal for deeper oil output cuts to offset the collapse in demand. Moreover, Russia withdrew abruptly from the deal. In response, oil prices went into a tailspin. At present, Brent crude is trading firmly below 25 US dollars a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate is hovering at near 21 US dollars. The Russian Urals has got stuck below 19 US dollars. In this context, the Russian ruble does not stand a chance to regain footing.  On the back of extremely low oil prices, Moscow is not interested in the firm national currency. On the contrary, the monetary authorities have sent the ruble into a nosedive which is under control. The forex ruble’s rate tumbled to 82.77 against the US dollar and 90.10 against the euro for the first time since February 2016.                  

Published: 2020-03-26 10:26:49 UTC
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