Anyway, most experts agree that in the first half of January, there were no risks for the ruble as economic activity remained low due to the New Year public holidays in Russia.
The volatility of the Russian ruble exchange rate is gradually getting on nerves of quite a large number of people. There is still a question for many people which currency to use for their meager savings.
For example, during the past New Year holidays, a slight jump of the dollar occurred. For this time of the year, such upticks are quite common. By the evening of December 31, the US dollar was trading at 74.80 rubles. A slight growth was on January 1. However, from the second day of the year, the value of the dollar went down. In the middle of the day on January 4, it reached 73.20 rubles. However, during the last hours of trading the dollar gained nearly a ruble back. On the morning of January 5, it was around 74 rubles.
Although experts usually consider fluctuations within 1 ruble as a sign of relative stability, people do not believe that the Russian currency will maintain its current position. This is confirmed also by economists' forecasts. Some of them predict a fall to 80 rubles per dollar by the end of the month. However, according to analysts, it might happen only if the key factors for the ruble in the new year come play up. First of all, it might be related to the new U.S. administration. After the Democrat Joe Biden came to power in the U.S., the sanctions policy against Moscow might be strengthened, believes the economic Nikita Maslennikov.
"If the new government in the U.S. starts introducing new anti-Russian sanctions, we might well see the ruble fall to a currency band of 78-80 rubles per dollar. Moreover, chances are it will happen closer to the end of the first month when representatives of Biden's government hold their positions. If the statements about the sanctions do not become tougher, then the dollar and the ruble will maintain the current position within the range of 73-75 rubles. However, at the moment, the real and fair price should be at the level of 70 rubles per dollar. Moreover, indeed, there is potential for the ruble’s further strengthening," Maslennikov said.
Economist Vitaly Kalugin shared this opinion. In an earlier interview, he said it was likely to happen not on the end but already in the middle of the month. "The only question is whether Biden will manage to get a majority of votes in the Senate. In doing so, he will be eligible to carry out his bills. That will be known as early as January 15. If he gets majority, it will allow him to pass laws on sanctions against Russia. Chances are it will affect the ruble," Kalugin said.
Anyway, most experts agree that in the first half of January, there were no risks for the ruble, as economic activity remained low owing to the New Year public holidays in Russia.