Russiaâ€™s ruble retreated for a second day on falling crude prices, while ING Groep NV said the drop would be steeper without demand from companies converting export revenue to pay a 1 trillion ruble ($14.5 billion) monthly tax bill.
The currency fell 0.3 percent against the dollar to 68.9410 by 11:32 a.m. in Moscow, extending Wednesdayâ€™s 1.8 percent decline â€” the sharpest slide in a month. Brent oil traded down 0.6 percent to $40.22 a barrel, pushing government bonds to their fourth day of losses.
The currency of the worldâ€™s largest energy exporter is headed for its first weekly retreat since mid-February as oilâ€™s recovery falters. While the ruble follows crudeâ€™s fluctuations, tax payments due on Friday and Monday may help decouple the two assets, according to ING.
â€œSales of exporters remain considerable, and this will support the ruble in coming days, muffling the impact of external conditions,â€ Dmitry Polevoy, chief economist for Russia at ING in Moscow, said by e-mail.
The correlation between Brent and the ruble declined for a sixth day to 0.74, the lowest since Jan. 20, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. A level of 1 would mean the two are moving in lockstep.
Oil is set for the lowest level in a week as a supply glut persists. Energy Information Administration data showed inventories in the U.S. rose by more than three times what was projected in a Bloomberg survey, while imports last week increased to the highest since June 2013.
Russiaâ€™s 50-stock Micex Index fell 0.6 percent to 1,869.41, extending its decline to four days. Five-year government notes fell, pushing the yield eight basis points higher to 9.32 percent.