Commodity currencies rally; Russian rouble firms in offshore market

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March 2 (Reuters) - Currencies of commodity-exporting economies rallied on Wednesday as oil and metal prices soared in the aftermath of stinging sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, while the rouble widened its divergence between onshore and offshore trading.

The Russian currency closed Moscow trading at 106 per dollar after hitting a new low of 110, while in the interbank market, the currency jumped almost 10% in extended trade to below 100 a dollar.

Market experts see this trend continuing given the restrictions on transactions with Russia. read more

In a matter of weeks, Russia has gone from a lucrative, oil-rich investment destination to a financial pariah. Risks of Russia defaulting on its debt also increased. read more

Russian stocks haven't traded this week but ETF's , , have tumbled to record lows. Several big global brands, including energy major Exxon (XOM.N) and planemaker Boeing (BA.N) have suspended operations in Russia as it rages on with its attack on Ukraine. read more

Russia international debt default looming

COMMODITIES BOOST Benefiting from the crisis were oil exporters, as crude prices jumped over $110 a barrel on expectations that the market will remain short of supply for months to come. Metal prices also rose on fears sanctions could hit supply.

But these also stoked inflation worries. read more

"The developing world and the raw material based world could rise, but because of this conflict, it's going to be on a very idiosyncratic basis," said Juan Perez, senior currency trader at Monex USA.

"So in each country it is going to matter whether they can pull against the dollar or push."

Currencies of Mexico , Brazil and Colombia rose between 0.3% and 1.2% with gains also aided by the dollar retreating slightly. Top copper producers Chile and Peru saw their currencies track a surge in prices of the red metal.

Commodity-rich South Africa's rand gave up session losses to trade 0.7% higher. MSCI's index of emerging market currencies (.MIEM00000CUS) reversed session losses of up to 0.3% to trade 0.1% higher.

But currencies of oil importers such as Turkey fell, as did those in central and eastern Europe due their proximity to the war in Ukraine. ,

Among stocks, Latin American equities outperformed broader peers (.MSCIEF) with expectations of a less hawkish U.S. Federal Reserve also aiding stocks globally.

Brazil markets returned after an extended weekend, with stocks (.BVSP) jumping 1.8%, on track for their best session in more than five weeks. Mining major Vale (VALE3.SA) and oil giant Petrobras were the biggest boosts.

Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1945 GMT:

Reporting by Susan Mathew, Bansari Mayur Kamdar, Shreyashi Sanyal and Anisha Sircar in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Chopra, Bernadette Baum and Grant McCool

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