Russian rouble firms towards 62 vs dollar as oil pressure lingers


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

MOSCOW, Dec 9 (Reuters) - The rouble strengthened towards 62 against the dollar on Friday, recouping some of the losses sustained this week with Russian assets under pressure from weaker oil prices and uncertainty over the impact of a new price cap on Russia's main export.

At 0756 GMT, the rouble was up 0.7% against the dollar at 62.31 RUBUTSTN=MCX . It sunk to a near eight-week low of 63.4325 on Wednesday.

The currency had gained 0.4% to trade at 65.92 versus the euro EURRUBTN=MCX and firmed 0.5% against the yuan to 8.95 CNYRUBTOM=MCX .

The central bank's final rate-setting meeting of the year next Friday, at which a rate hold at 7.5% is widely expected, could add volatility to the currency market, said Veles Capital in a note.

Bank of Russia analysts said this week the country's economy and government finances face pressure from the European Union's embargo of Russian oil exports and a $60-a-barrel price cap imposed by the G7, the EU and Australia.

Brent crude oil LCOc1 , a global benchmark for Russia's main export, was up 0.5% at $76.5 a barrel, having slid to its lowest mark this year in the previous session. Oil prices are set to post their biggest weekly drop in months.

In addition to the oil embargo and price ceiling risks, the prospect of another EU sanctions package against Moscow and the second-largest lender VTB VTBR.MM suspending coupon payments on some subordinated bond issues, were weighing on stock markets.

Russian stock indexes were mixed.

The dollar-denominated RTS index .IRTS was up 0.6% to 1,103.7 points. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index .IMOEX was 0.1% lower at 2,183.2 points.

For Russian equities guide see RU/EQUITY

For Russian treasury bonds see 0#RUTSY=MM
Reporting by Alexander Marrow Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky

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