| MOSCOW, April 5
MOSCOW, April 5 Russian energy company Rosneft
and state-controlled diamond miner Alrosa
have started direct foreign exchange operations on the Moscow
Exchange, potentially leading to lower rouble volatility.
Russian companies normally trade currencies on the exchange
via commercial banks or brokerages, paying commission on the
transactions. But large companies got the option to trade
directly since January, in a move aimed at boosting liquidity on
"The number of participants will increase.. This is positive
and can lower volatility, as well as narrow spreads between
currency purchases and sales," Alexander Polonsky, deputy head
of the monetary policy department at the central bank, told
reporters on Wednesday.
Both Rosneft and Alrosa have sold several tens of millions
of dollars directly via the Moscow Exchange (MOEX) on Tuesday,
Igor Marich, managing director of the money and derivatives
market at MOEX, said.
Rosneft had promised the exchange a "stable" flow of direct
forex operations, Marich told reporters.
Referring to Rosneft, MOEX said in a statement that direct
access to forex operations would allow the company to more
effectively manage its liquidity.
Alrosa plans to conduct up to 50 percent of its all currency
operations via the new tool, amounting to $150-$200 million a
month, Interfax reported on Wednesday.
Rosneft did not respond to Reuters request on exact volumes.
(Additional reporting by Olesya Astakhova; writing by Katya
Golubkova; editing by Sujata Rao)