October 27, 2017 / 8:23 AM / in 2 months

Russian rouble dips on stronger dollar, eyes c.bank key rate decision

MOSCOW, Oct 27 (Reuters) - The Russian rouble came under pressure from a stronger dollar on Friday ahead of a meeting by the Russian Central Bank which is widely expected to cut its key rate.

Sixteen of 20 analysts and economists polled by Reuters said they expected the central bank to lower the key rate by 25 basis points from the current 8.5 percent at a meeting later on Friday.

The market “has already priced in a 25 basis points rate cut,” analysts at VTB Capital said in a note.

“50 basis points might not be a big surprise for the market either, but we still think that the outcome would underpin some international bid for OFZ (treasury bonds), fuelling rouble strengthening,” VTB Capital said.

At 0740 GMT, the rouble was 0.49 percent weaker against the dollar at 58.14 and had gained 0.26 percent to trade at 67.58 versus the euro.

Brent crude oil, a global benchmark for Russia’s main export, was up 0.07 percent at $59.34 a barrel.

The rouble lost ground against the dollar which strengthened after the European Central Bank extended its bond purchases on Thursday, taking its biggest step yet in weaning the euro zone economy off protracted stimulus.

Russian stock indexes were mixed.

The dollar-denominated RTS index was down 0.18 percent to 1,116 points, while the rouble-based MICEX was 0.61 percent higher at 2,059 points.

For rouble poll data see reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/fx-polls?RIC=RUB=

For Russian equities guide see

For Russian treasury bonds see

Russia in graphics: link.reuters.com/dun63s (Reporting by Polina Nikolskaya; Editing by Jack Stubbs and Peter Graff)

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