The exchange rate further increased early in the afternoon of December 13 compared to the morning hours. Banking dealers remarked on this fact in an interview with RBC. They pointed out that as of 1 p.m., the maximum rate for deals at the afternoon trading session had substantially exceeded the level of 30.30 rubles per dollar. The weighted-mean dollar rate also remains high on the 'free market,' where it deviates from the official dollar rate for December 14 (30.19 rubles per dollar) by almost 10 kopecks. The rise in the exchange rate on the inter-bank market is taking place while the Central Bank is absent at the afternoon trading session at the currency exchange, the experts underlined. They gave the opinion that in the short term, the Central Bank would conduct currency interventions to support the ruble only at the Unified Trading Session. In the experts' view, due to the substantial decline in the volume of foreign currency reserves, the Central Bank does not have the ability to sell dollars in large quantities at both morning and afternoon trading sessions any more. At the same time, the dealers did not rule out the possibility that in the event of a sharp fall in the ruble rate on the inter-bank market, the Central Bank would interfere in the trade to correct the situation by means of a large-scale currency intervention.
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