What prospects for ruble are in the new year?
For the first time in four years January currency bidding on the Russian market started with the ruble appreciation. Growth of the national currency rate continues on the backwards of the oil prices recovery and keeping demand of foreign investors for ruble assets.
Long-expected appreciation. Strengthening of the ruble started in the second half of 2016: oil prices exceeding USD 50 per barrel and the new president of the USA became the best recovery tools for the Russian currency weakened in the beginning of the year. As a result, ruble strengthened positions almost on 22% against dollar for the previous year and, according to Bloomberg, showed the best dynamics among all the world currencies. Growth comparable to ruble showed only Brazilian real with the exchange rate growing against USD on 21%. Majority of developing countries showed negative dynamics. The exchange-value of ruble against euro has also significantly grown for the previous year – almost on 19 RUB/EUR. Thus, the national currency demonstrated the most significant appreciation for recent history. The beginning of the new year became for ruble as successful as the end of 2016: for the first time since July, 2015 the exchange-value of dollar decreased below the psychological threshold 60 RUB/USD, and the exchange rate of euro decreased below 63 RUB/EUR. As a result, Russian ruble again became leader among currencies of the developing countries.
Historical decline. Speaking long-term, oil is still a key factor for growth of the exchange rate of the Russian currency. Leading part for that was historical decision of the Organization of Petroleum-Exporting Countries (OPEC) that became the most important event of the end of 2016. For the first time since 2008 the cartel agreed on cut in oil output, moreover, not only countries – members of the organizations, but also 11 other oil manufacturers, that are not members of the OPEC agreed to decline oil output. Claim of the Oil Industry Minister of Saudi Arabia on readiness if required to decline oil output above agreed to became an additional growth driver for the energy source prices. As a result, oil quoted prices have come back to maximum values since July, 2015 and Russian ruble has significantly strengthened positions.
Awaiting the removal of sanctions. If during most of 2016 the exchange rate of ruble followed world oil market prices, so for the last months reference of the ruble to oil prices has notably weakened. Expectation of cooling of tension between Russia and the USA after election of the president Donald Trump also contributed to this. The new president of the USA is friendlier to Russia and can consider the removal of sanctions question, that is, undoubtedly, positive for ruble and Russian economy. Expecting the relaxation of sanctions, the demand of foreign investors for ruble assets has shortly grown. According to the data of Emerging Portfolio Fund Research, for six weeks after victory of the leader of the republicans, investors contributed to the Russian funds more than USD 1 bln.
Oil dependence. Speaking of positive factors helping to the ruble appreciation, it should be remembered that the long-term strengthening of the Russian currency of the national economy is possible only when it is on the backwards of the prices growth. Currently dependence of the exchange-value of ruble from oil is decreasing, but it cannot disappear, while export amount that directly depends on oil prices is the fundamental basis for external accounts of the country. However, ruble oil valuation is still on the comfortable for the budget rate. Now, when it is obvious that growth of oil quoted prices is a long-term tendency, in view of November summit of OPEC, many investors changed their attitude to ruble. Under such conditions market participants leave open the possibility of further appreciation of the Russian currency. If oil price remains on the attained level, demand for ruble will also grow on the part of the long-term investors – not only foreign, but also local ones.
To realize potential. Under current macroeconomic conditions it is very difficult to give precise long-tern forecasts, however, most experts agree that the potential for the ruble appreciation is accumulated, and foreign investors show bigger interest in Russian assets. Currently, the national economy looks attractive that most of the other developing countries, that if realizing of current positive expectations – fulfillment of the OPEC plans on decline of oil output and rapprochement of the USA and Russia – it will contribute to further appreciation of the exchange rate of the national currency, hence, to general stabilization of the economic situation in the country.
Starting from January 1, 2017 changes in legislation including laws, regulating the relations in economy, came into force.
Information Agency Credinform has prepared the short overview of the most important federal legislative acts coming into force this year.
Federal Law of July 13, 2015 No. 218-FZ «On state registration of the real estate» regulates relations, which are forming due to: state registration of the real property titles and real estate transactions, which must be registered in accordance with legislation of the Russian Federation; state cadastral registration of real estate, which should be recorded according to this Federal Law; maintenance of the Uniform State Register of Real Estate and providing information from the register.
Federal Law of June 23, 2016 No. 216-FZ «On the amendments to Articles 346 and 346 of Part II of the Russian Federation Tax Code» according to the Law, agricultural manufacturers (companies and individual entrepreneurs), who want to apply the taxation system for agricultural manufacturers (unified agricultural tax) starting from January 1, 2017 should notify the tax authority at the location of the company or at the place of residence of individual entrepreneur about the transition to payment of the unified agricultural tax no later than February 15, 2017.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 237-FZ «On state cadastral assessment» regulates relations, which are forming during the state cadastral assessment on a territory of the Russian Federation.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 238-FZ «On independent assessment of qualification» regulates relations, which are forming during independent assessment of the employees’ qualification and persons, aspiring to operate under a certain type of work activities.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 231-FZ «On the amendments to certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation due to adoption of the Federal Law «On the protection of rights and legitimate interests of individuals while repayment of overdue debt and on the amendments to the Federal Law «On microfinance and microfinance organizations».
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 248-FZ «On the amendments to Part II of the Russian Federation Tax Code» defined, that the types of business activities in industrial, social and scientific fields with 0 per cent tax rate, are determined by subjects of the Russian Federation on the basis of the Russian Classification of Economic Activities.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 243-FZ «On the amendments to Parts I and II of the Russian Federation Tax Code due to the transfer of authority over administration of pension, social and medical insurance payments to the tax authorities».
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 282-FZ «On the amendments to the Code of Merchant Marines of the Russian Federation and Articles 17 and 19 of the Federal Law «On the sea ports in the Russian Federation and on the amendments to individual legislative acts of the Russian Federation» defined the terms for provision of the vessel, registered in National Shipping Register, Russian International Register of Vessels or Small Ships Register, for usage and ownership to a foreign charterer under a bareboat charter.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 287-FZ «On amendments to the Federal Law «On noncommercial organizations» in terms of establishing the status of a nonprofit organization - executor of public utility services».
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 275-FZ «On amendments to the Federal Law «On concessionary agreements» defined the features of regulating relations, which are forming during preparation, conclusion, execution, modification and termination of concessionary agreements in terms of heat supply facilities, centralized hot water systems, cold water supply and (or) disposal systems, separate objects of such systems.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 321-FZ «On amendments to individual legislative acts of the Russian Federation in terms of purchase of goods, works, services for state and municipal needs and the needs of individual types of legal entities» defined the features of procurement organized by state unitary enterprises and municipal unitary enterprises.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 343-FZ «On amendments to the Federal Law «On joint stock companies» and the Federal Law «On limited liability companies» regulating major transactions and related-party transactions».
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 348-FZ «On amendments to the Labour Code of the Russian Federation in terms of the specifics of regulating the labour of individuals employed by businesses classed as micro-organizations».
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 361-FZ «On amendments to individual legislative acts of the Russian Federation and invalidation of individual legislative acts (provisions of legislative acts) of the Russian Federation» made the amendments in legislation due to implementation of the Uniform State Register of Real Estate; defined the arrangements for using the information from the Uniform State Register of Real Estate for credit and insurance organizations, notarial actions; defined key elements for governmental registration of hypothecation.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No. 304-FZ «On the amendments to the Federal Law «On the participation in shared construction of apartment houses and other objects of immovable property and on the amendments to certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation» and certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation» defined the requirements to the builder for the attraction of citizens’ funds on construction of the apartment building on the basis of the participatory share construction agreement.
Federal Law of July 3, 2016 No.315-FZ «On the amendments to Part I of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation and individual legislative acts of the Russian Federation» defined the list of immovable items, which include the residential and non-residential premises as well as structural elements of buildings and structures for transport vehicles (car-places) in case the borders of such areas, elements of buildings and structures are described in the state cadastral registration procedure, established by legislation.
Federal Law of November 30, 2016 No. 403-FZ «On the amendments to Article 219 of Part II of the Russian Federation Tax Code» on obtaining of the tax deduction by the employee.
Federal Law of November 30, 2016 No. 405-FZ «On the amendments to Article 266 of Part II of the Russian Federation Tax Code» on doubtful debts reserves for banks, consumer credit cooperatives and micro financial entities.
Federal Law of November 30, 2016 No. 399-FZ «On the amendments to Articles 83 and 84 of Part I and Article 226 of Part II of the Russian Federation Tax Code» introduced the concept of tax agent for the entities on a territory of Russia.
Federal Law of December 19, 2016 No. 449-FZ «On the amendments to Article 311 of the Federal Law «On noncommercial organizations» on state support of noncommercial organizations - executors of public utility services.