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Rouble Rebounds to 61 vs Dollar as Russian Market Reopens after Holiday

MOSCOW, Nov 7 (Reuters) - The rouble strengthened to a two-week high on Monday, belatedly responding to last Friday's dollar weakness as it pulled away from its lowest point since mid-October that was hit before the Russian market closed for a three-day weekend.

By 1000 GMT, the rouble was 1.5% stronger against the dollar at 61.19 , earlier reaching 61.00, its strongest point since Oct. 24. The currency hit a more than two-week low against the greenback in the previous session on Thursday.

It had gained 0.1% to trade at 60.98 versus the euro and had shed 0.2% against the yuan to 8.42 .

Better-than-expected U.S. jobs data saw the dollar fall on Friday, when the Russian market was closed. The positive rouble dynamics on Monday morning were a reaction to that, said chief analyst Bogdan Zvarich in a note.

The rouble is the world's best-performing currency this year, supported by capital controls and an initial collapse in imports as a result of Western sanctions on Russia over its actions in Ukraine, and scores of foreign companies pausing operations in the country.

The rouble has mostly traded between 61 and 62 to the dollar in the past few weeks, but that range may widen in November as imports could recover further, while high prices of Russian exports promise considerable foreign currency inflows, Otkritie Research said.

Brent crude oil , a global benchmark for Russia's main export, which hit a more than two-month high in the previous session, was down 0.3% at $98.3 a barrel.

"The Russian market is set for a neutral opening, though crude has every chance to drive the market higher," said BCS Global Markets in a note.

Stocks opened higher and then pushed on to hit their highest in weeks.

The dollar-denominated RTS index was up 3.2% to 1,129.5 points, its strongest since Sept. 30. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 1.8% higher at 2,193.9 points, its highest mark since Sept. 22.

Reporting by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Alex Richardson

Source: Reuters

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