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Nov 20, 2009 18:54 EEST
November 20 (SeeNews) - The Romanian leu weakened versus the euro on Friday, mirroring other currencies of emerging markets in the region, and was unfazed by the forthcoming first round of presidential elections, dealers said.
The leu ended at 4.2800/2860 per euro, compared to 4.2770/2780 per euro on Thursday.
Romania will hold the first round of its presidential elections on Sunday. A run-off vote between the two frontrunners two weeks later is highly likely, polls showed.
"The leu depreciated today in line with currencies of other emerging markets. I don’t think that results of the first round of the elections will influence the leu, because they will not be final results," one dealer told SeeNews.
The Czech crown led losses on European emerging markets today, depreciating by 0.78%. The Hungarian forint and the Polish zloty weakened 0.63% and 0.24% against the euro, respectively.
"We think the results of the elections will also be important for RON exchange rate dynamics. Although the final result will only be known after the second round on December 6, it may be possible to discern some clues about a new coalition in Parliament even after Sunday’s result," Raiffeisen Research said in its weekly Focus FX forecast on Friday.
"If the political turmoil calms down and a new government is established, this should be very positive for the leu exchange rate over the medium and long term," it said, adding that non-resident interest in the leu and trading volume remain low now.
Romania’s central bank, BNR, set its reference exchange rate at 4.2817 lei per euro on Friday, compared to 4.2778 on Thursday. For the U.S. dollar, the BNR set its reference exchange rate at 2.8780 lei versus Thursday’s 2.8749.
Turnover on the interbank leu deposit market was up to 2.381 billion lei on Thursday from 2.055 billion lei on Wednesday. The BNR will issue Friday’s turnover figures on Monday.
Interest rates on overnight leu deposits rose to 5.57%/6.07% on Friday from 7.89%/8.39% on Thursday.
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