MOSCOW: The Russian rouble weakened to a two-week low versus the dollar on Thursday, pricing in risks of more sanctions against Moscow and a recent slide in oil prices.
The rouble was 0.4 percent weaker at 63.22 versus the dollar as of 0736 GMT after briefly hitting 63.30, the level last seen on July 5.
Against the euro, the rouble shed 0.1 percent to 73.41 .
“Sentiment in the Russian exchange market remained vulnerable, as sanction talk is back in headlines. On top that, it should not be forgotten that oil has lost some 8 percent month-to-date,” analysts at VTB Capital said in a note.
Sanctions targeting key Russian economic sectors would kick in swiftly if U.S. authorities determined the Kremlin had meddled again in a U.S. election, a bill gaining momentum in the Senate showed on Wednesday.
Prices for oil, Russia’s key exports, also put pressure on Russian assets. Brent crude oil futures were down 0.8 percent at $72.31 a barrel, having fallen from levels above $79 seen last week.
Russian stock indexes were down. The dollar-denominated RTS index slid 0.6 percent lower to 1,137.5, while the rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.4 percent lower at 2,285.1 points.