EMERGING MARKETS-Hryvnia gains on IMF hope; Brazil's real dips
By Walter Brandimarte and Sujata Rao
RIO DE JANEIRO/LONDON Feb 28 (Reuters) - Ukraine's hryvnia jumped as much as 10 percent on Friday on hopes of a loan from the International Monetary Fund, while the Brazilian real slid 0.5 percent after the latest budget data poured cold water on hopes that the country would halt a deterioration in its fiscal performance.
Russia's rouble gained slightly but stayed near five-year lows to the dollar on Friday, pressured by fears about instability in neighboring Crimea.
The rouble and other emerging currencies were also pressured by jitters over the recent volatility in the Chinese yuan, which posted its biggest daily fall since China created its foreign exchange market in 1994.
In Ukraine, armed men have taken control of two airports in the Crimea region in what the government described as an invasion by Russian forces, raising fears of an escalation of tensions between the neighbors and between Moscow and the West.
Russia has denied involvement.
The impact of the crisis in Ukraine continued to be felt across European emerging markets but is taking a heavy toll on Russian assets in particular as it comes on the heels of evidence that the country's economy is slowing.
The rouble fell as much as 0.6 percent to the dollar before rising slightly. It also hit a fresh record low to the euro and a euro-dollar basket used by the central bank . It has lost more than 2 percent this month against the dollar, taking its losses since the start of 2014 to 9 percent.
"Ukraine is a trigger, not a cause," said Per Hammerlund, chief EM strategist at SEB in Stockholm. "We have generally a bearish view on the rouble, primarily because of fundamentals, but recent turmoil in Ukraine is contributing to a push lower." Continuación...