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Oct 31, 2014

Russia raises interest rate sharply as rouble slides, inflation climbs

MOSCOW, Oct 31 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank raised its
main interest rate much more than expected on Friday, trying to
tackle a sliding rouble and climbing inflation as plunging
global oil prices and Western sanctions hurt the economy.

However, the bank said that it had not changed its rouble
exchange rate intervention policy, confounding speculation that
it might use Friday’s meeting to announce changes that would
have enabled a stronger defence of the rouble.

Oct 30, 2014

Russia seen raising interest rates despite weak economy

MOSCOW, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Russia will raise interest rates
this week to curb inflation and prop up the rouble, analysts
forecast in a Reuters poll, as the central bank tries to contain
fallout from the Ukraine crisis and plunging oil prices.

But they predicted that an expected 50 basis point rate rise
at Friday’s central bank board meeting would only gradually
reduce inflation and provide limited support to the weakening
currency. The increase, which would be the fourth this year and
take the benchmark rate to 8.5 percent, would also contribute to
an economic contraction over the next three quarters.

Oct 29, 2014

Russian central bank sees meagre demand for new forex repos

MOSCOW, Oct 29 (Reuters) – A debut auction of forex repos by
Russia’s central bank on Wednesday met with lacklustre demand,
with analysts saying banks were deterred from taking up the
offer by a relatively high interest rate and short-term nature
of the instrument.

The $50 billion repo programme is seen as one of the steps
to shore up the rouble, which has been plunging as a result of
falling oil prices and the impact of Western sanctions imposed
over Ukraine, at a time when Russian companies need billions of
dollars to pay impending foreign debt payments.

Oct 23, 2014

Analysis – No easy options for Russia’s central bank to halt rouble slide

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Pressure is growing on Russia’s central bank to adopt more radical measures to defend the tumbling rouble, such as interest rate rises, but there is no easy fix.

The bank’s board meets on Oct. 31 to discuss monetary policy and there is growing speculation it may soon raise rates to support the rouble, which is being hit by plunging oil prices and Western sanctions imposed over the Ukraine crisis.

Oct 23, 2014

No easy options for Russia’s central bank to halt rouble slide

MOSCOW, Oct 23 (Reuters) – Pressure is growing on Russia’s
central bank to adopt more radical measures to defend the
tumbling rouble, such as interest rate rises, but there is no
easy fix.

The bank’s board meets on Oct. 31 to discuss monetary policy
and there is growing speculation it may soon raise rates to
support the rouble, which is being hit by plunging oil prices
and Western sanctions imposed over the Ukraine crisis.

Oct 16, 2014

Rouble’s plunge shows Russia’s reliance on Western money

MOSCOW, Oct 16 (Reuters) – A steep plunge in the rouble,
caused by sanctions over the Ukraine crisis and falling oil
prices, has underlined Russia’s heavy dependence on Western
finance to balance its dollar-thirsty economy.

For all President Vladimir Putin’s anti-Western bravado and
talk of shifting Russia’s economic ties to Asia, the last few
weeks show the opposite – that the cogs of the economy are oiled
by financial flows from the West.

Oct 3, 2014

Russian central bank to lend dollars to offset Western sanctions

MOSCOW, Oct 3 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank is working
out new measures to provide foreign-currency financing for
banks, as Western sanctions over the Ukraine crisis keep dollars
in short supply.

Central bank governor Elvira Nabiullina said on Thursday
that in the coming weeks the bank plans to introduce repo
facilities under which it would lend dollars to banks for terms
of seven and 28 days.

Oct 1, 2014

Russian central bank prepares strategy for sharp oil price drop

MOSCOW, Oct 1 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank is working
on measures to support the economy should oil prices fall by as
much as a third or more, a senior official said on Wednesday,
showing growing concern as the rouble slides and Western
sanctions take a toll.

The International Monetary Fund also gave a pessimistic
assessment of the Russian economy, halving its growth forecast
for 2015 to just 0.5 percent.

Sep 24, 2014

Russia still on track to achieve low inflation -central banker

MOSCOW, Sept 23 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank can
achieve low inflation despite economic shocks from the Ukraine
crisis, the bank’s Deputy Governor Ksenia Yudayeva told Reuters
on Wednesday.

She was cautious about economic growth, though, arguing that
low growth was a serious structural problem facing the country
which monetary policy was largely powerless to solve. The best
the bank could do to help, she said, was to boost the confidence
of long-term savers by bringing inflation under control.

Sep 19, 2014

Russian stocks get short-lived relief from tycoon’s release

MOSCOW, Sep 19 (Reuters) – Russian shares got a short-lived
boost on Friday afternoon after a well-known tycoon was freed
from house arrest, but the market optimism faded, leaving
indexes well into the red.

Sistema, the conglomerate of telecoms and oil
tycoon Vladimir Yevtushenkov, said that the businessman had been
freed from house arrest. But he will have to stay in Russia to
face money laundering charges.