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- USD/RUB continues is descent towards 74.00 at the open as markets fade early USD strength.
- Oil markets were buoyed slightly by better than expected Chinese export & services data, having failed to take out the $70 handle in yesterday's session.
- Some increased pressure noted from the West in yesterday's session with Blinken & the EU both alluding to persistent risks from Russian troops on Ukraine's border, but failed to offset bullish RUB catalysts.
- Focus today on CPI for signs of deceleration in price pressures in line with CBR predictions for a cyclical peak in inflation in March.
- CBR alluded to further hikes in the pipeline, showing its concern about demand-side price pressures through its above-expectation +50bp hike, and will be watching this print closely.
- 3x6 FRA-Mosprime spreads remain at +80bp, showing a slight overpricing with markets mostly expecting two sequential +25bp hikes at the next meetings.
- However, the CBR has surprised analysts in two consecutive meetings and said +50bp moves are still possible, so a tactical approach is definitely warranted going into the next meetings.
- Intraday Sup1: 73.9706, Sup2: 73.7436, Res1: 74.1981, Res2: 74.3885