* This content was produced in Russia where the law restricts coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine
The rouble fell against the dollar to the lowest in two weeks on Tuesday, while shares in aluminium producer Rusal leapt as Russian businessman Vladimir Potanin hinted at a possible merger with mining giant Nornickel.
At 0759 GMT, the rouble was 2.6% weaker against the dollar at 56.68, its weakest point since June 20. The unit had lost 1.4% to trade at 58.58 versus the euro .
The rouble's recent slump from more than seven-year highs hit last Wednesday is just a correction on the market, said Alor Broker in a note.
"It is too early to talk about a break in the rouble's strengthening trend," Alor Broker analysts wrote. "Russia's balance of payments will continue to remain very strong, importers will not recover their positions quickly.
"Only by introducing a new budget rule can the situation on Moscow Exchange's currency market change radically."
The rouble is still the world's best-performing currency this year, boosted by measures - including restrictions on Russian households withdrawing foreign currency savings - taken to shield Russia's financial system from Western sanctions imposed after Moscow sent troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24 in what it calls a "special military operation".
Proceeds from commodity exports and a sharp drop in imports are further factors behind the currency's gains. But the rouble has now lost the support of last week's tax-driven dollar and euro sales.
Expectations of the imminent launch of currency interventions, which Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said Russia could turn to as it tries keep a lid on the rouble's strengthening, may continue to pull support from the rouble on Tuesday, said Promsvyazbank analysts.
Potanin, the largest shareholder at Nornickel, is ready to discuss a possible merger of the mining giant with Rusal amid Western sanctions, he said in an interview with RBC TV.
Rusal's Moscow-listed shares leapt more than 20% before settling around 10% higher. Shares in En+, Rusal's majority shareholder, were 10.5% higher in Moscow. Nornickel shares fell 2.1%.
Russian stock indexes were lower.
The dollar-denominated RTS index was down 2% to 1,224.0 points. The rouble-based MOEX Russian index was 0.1% lower at 2,202.0 points. (Reporting by Reuters)