ArmInfo. NASDAQ OMX Armenia was quite active in late January 2017, while the interbank forex market demonstrated a downward trend. As a result, Armenian dram retained its positions against US dollar and EUR at 486.5 AMD/$1 and 520 AMD/1EUR, at the same time slightly appreciating against Russian ruble from 8.2 to 8.1 AMD/1RUR. In early January, AMD sharply depreciated against EUR rather than against USD and RUR, and this trend continued in mid-January.
It should be noted for comparison that at the beginning of 2016 AMD exchange rate was as follows: 482 AMD/$1, 529 AMD/1EUR and 6.9 AMD/1RUR. Since the beginning of 2016 the foreign exchange market showed signs of life rarely, making one at a time transaction between March and May: USD100 thousand in March, USD 2.950 mln in April and USD 800 thousand in May, after which it was passive. In Jan-Oct 2016, the Central Bank bought USD on the foreign exchange market in April (USD2.4 mln at 478.5 AMD/$1), June (USD 50.2 mln at 476.72 AMD/$1), August ($19.8 mln at 474.25 AMD/$1), September (USD28.8mln at 474.11 AMD/$1) and October (USD 50.8 mln at 475.47 AMD/$1), and sold in January and February (USD53.1 mln and USD 41.5mln, respectively at 484.69 AMD/$1 and 492.59 AMD/$1).
The press office of the Central Bank of Armenia has told ArmInfo that on January 23-27 the amount of transactions on the interbank forex market totaled $9.8 mln at the average exchange rate of 486.83AMD/$1. In the meantime, on the intrabank market the banks bought $101.4 mln at the average exchange rate of 485.74 AMD/$1, 7.8 mln EUR at the average exchange rate of 518.59 AMD/1EUR and 701.1 mln RUR at the rate of 8.12 AMD/1RUR, and sold $104.3 mln at the average exchange rate of 486.80 AMD/$1, 8.8 mln EUR at average rate of 523.2 AMD/1EUR and 303.1 mln RUR at the average exchange rate of 8.22 AMD/1RUR.
According to the source, during the previous week (January 16-21), Armenian banks provided AMD loans worth 39.1 bln AMD and USD loans worth $22.1 mln (down 3-fold and down 8.7-fold versus a week before).
To recall, in 2015, on the retail foreign exchange market of Armenia, AMD depreciated against USD from 477 to 482 AMD/USD1 on average and appreciated against EUR from 571.5 to 529 AMD/1EUR and against Russian ruble from 8.2 to 6.9 AMD/1 RUR. Between December 14 and 28, the Central Bank made almost daily interventions. AMD depreciated amid slackening of economic activity growth from 3.9% to 3.1%, decline of foreign trade turnover (by 20.6%), with import dropping more significantly (by 26.5%) than export (by 3.9%) as well as amid decline in money transfer inflow to Armenia by over 30%, and this happened under conditions of low buying capacity of the population. In 2016, AMD depreciated on the retail foreign exchange market of Armenia against USD and RUR to 484AMD/USD1 and 8 AMD/1RUR, and revaluated against EUR to 505 AMD/1EUR. This happened amid deflation of consumer prices by 1.1% in 2016, slackening of growth of economic activity to 0.5%, and decline of the net inflow of transfers (by 24% in Jan-Nov 2016 versus Jan-Nov 2015). In the meantime, the foreign trade turnover grew by 7.4% and deflation on the consumer market made up 1.4%. In early 2017 AMD depreciated against USD from 484 to 485 AMD/$1, against EUR from 505 to 511 AMD/1EUR, and against RUR from 8 to 8.1 AMD/1RUR.