Banks do not see higher currency demand of Russians

TASS Russian News Agency | Nov 27, 2020 at 5:16 PM

MOSCOW, November 27. /TASS/. The largest Russian banks do not register higher demand of households for foreign exchange during the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Russians now prefer to make currency transactions remotely through mobile apps, rather than in money changes, the largest domestic credit institutions told TASS on Friday.

"We do not observe high currency demand from households. Our clients choose remote channels for the currency exchange now - the Internet bank and the mobile app," Aliya Zubkova from Otkritie Bank says.

The Credit Bank of Moscow (CBM) also does not see high currency demand among its clients. "Currency exchange operations of CBM clients during the given period are normal. The bank provides an opportunity to perform them in cash departments of offices and in the online bank. We have not noticed higher demand for currency exchange operations in the mobile bank lately," the press service of CBM says. The share of operations with foreign cash is 30% and transactions in the online bank account for 70%.

More and more clients start buying currency at broker accounts for further investments into currency instruments but the mobile bank remains the key exchange channel so far, Sberbank says.

"We offer the currency exchange at broker accounts and increasingly more clients start using this service for investments into currency instruments. Nevertheless, the Sberbank Online mobile app is now the key channel to provide currency operations services in Sber, where clients can buy and sell foreign exchange at a lucrative rate," Sberbank's press service said.

According to data of the Central Bank, the share of foreign currency in retail deposits gained 4.5 percentage points from the year-start to 35% as of late October. The share of foreign exchange in companies' funds also had an upsurge by 1.7 percentage points to 21.3%.