Russian ruble, shares fall in morning trade

The official Russian ruble slumped over 61 kopecks to the dollar on Monday to 30.3034 and stock indices lost nearly three percent in the morning trade as local markets followed international trading floors down over worries about a possible Greek default.

The dollar-denominated RTS stock exchange lost 3.28 to 1,572.04 as of 12:20 a.m. Moscow time, while the ruble-denominated MICEX decreased 2.70 percent to 1,477.23.

The ruble slipped three kopecks against the euro to 41.04 at opening, while the value of the bi-currency basket, comprising $0.55 and 0.45 euros, increased by 19 kopecks compared to Friday’s close to 35.13 rubles.

The euro hit a six-month low against the dollar and a 10-year low against the yen after the resignation of a top European Central Bank official cast further doubt on the region’s ability to tackle its worsening sovereign debt crisis. Germany’s government announced plans to support the banking sector in case of default in Greece, providing compensation for losses.

France’s CAC plunged by 4 percent, London’s FTSE by 2.23 percent, Frankfurt’s DAX by 2.53 percent.

The speech of U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner at the G7 summit, in which he mentioned that no dramatic statements or significant movements should be expected yet, also spoiled investor’s appetite.

“Today, the U.S. does not expect any publication of important macroeconomic data that may influence the course of stock trading. In Europe, a press conference of the ECB Jean-Claude Trichet is to be held,” Aton analyst Elena Kozhukhova said in a research note.

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