Raiffeisen added that the leu remained stable, even if the political woes boosted investors’ risk aversion. The bank sees an exchange rate of 4.30lei/euro in March and a gradual decline to 4.25lei/euro in June and to 4.20 lei/euro in September.

“Our forecasts rely on the assumption that the political deadlock will persist for the remainder of the year until a new government is sworn-in. Should a new government is formed sooner, the leu could gain more than we expect. If the government proposed by PD-L fails to gain the parliamentary vote of confidence, the leu could depreciate on a short-term”, the bank said.

On December 11, ING said it expected an exchange rate of 4.40lei/euro in mid 2010, followed by a recovery of the national currency to 4.25lei/euro at the end of the year.

Raiffeisen added that the National Bank of Romania was likely to keep key rate at current level in the next rate-setting session scheduled for January 5.

“Our basic scenario points to an upkeep of key rate at the next NBR rate-setting session in early January. The excise and political uncertainty-driven pressure over the inflation will be the key factors that could determine the central bank to maintain benchmark lending rate at current level”.