Jason's Feed
May 25, 2013

Russian pro-, anti-gay activists arrested after defying ban

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian police detained around 30 pro- and anti-gay activists in central Moscow on Saturday, imposing the city’s ban on gay rights demonstrations.

The arrests, underlining Russia’s tough response to public demonstrations by gay groups, coincided with the first ever gay rally in neighboring Ukraine, which was allowed by the authorities and protected by the police.

May 14, 2013

Russian c.bank seen on hold, trapped between inflation, slowing economy

MOSCOW, May 14 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank is likely
to keep interest rates on hold on Wednesday, before its new head
takes office, caught between stubbornly high inflation and a
slowing economy.

The Bank of Russia has come under political pressure to cut
lending rates to boost economic growth, which has slowed sharply
in recent months and came to just 1.1 percent in the first
quarter.

May 8, 2013

Analysis: Putin can’t blame global ills for Russia’s economic crunch

MOSCOW (Reuters) – He is one of a few people who can stand up to Vladimir Putin, but even Russia’s former finance minister failed to persuade the president his economy’s problems lie at home not abroad.

When Alexei Kudrin took Putin to task live on television during the president’s annual question-and-answer session and said the economy was tanking because of a poor business climate in Russia, Putin brushed off the criticism – jokingly calling Kudrin a “slacker” for declining a new government job.

May 8, 2013

Putin can’t blame global ills for Russia’s economic crunch

MOSCOW, May 8 (Reuters) – He is one of a few people who can
stand up to Vladimir Putin, but even Russia’s former finance
minister failed to persuade the president his economy’s problems
lie at home not abroad.

When Alexei Kudrin took Putin to task live on television
during the president’s annual question-and-answer session and
said the economy was tanking because of a poor business climate
in Russia, Putin brushed off the criticism – jokingly calling
Kudrin a “slacker” for declining a new government job.

Apr 2, 2013

Russian c.bank cuts long-term rates, sees risks to growth

MOSCOW, April 2 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank lowered
its interest rates on long-term operations on Tuesday and warned
of “increased risks” to economic growth, making cuts in its key
policy rates more likely in the near future.

The bank’s moves suggest it is softening its previously
hawkish position. But they also underscore the dilemma the
central bank faces, when Russia is caught between the twin evils
of excessive inflation and a sharp slowdown in economic growth.

Mar 13, 2013

Much to prove for Putin’s central bank pick Nabiullina

MOSCOW, March 13 (Reuters) – Elvira Nabiullina has the
confidence and credentials as an economist to resist Kremlin
appeals for looser monetary policy once she moves from Vladimir
Putin’s office to head the Russian central bank.

But for some, the president’s choice – announced on Tuesday
at the expense of frontrunners within the bank’s existing
management – signals the decline of a liberal economic policy
elite that has dominated strategy since Putin rose to power 13
years ago and shows central bank independence only goes so far.

Feb 26, 2013

Russia needs structural reforms, not stimulus-World Bank

MOSCOW, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Russia should undertake
structural reforms and not cut interest rates or boost spending
to revive flagging economic growth, the World Bank said on
Tuesday in its annual country report.

“Stimulating the economy in the short term would just spill
over into more persistent and higher inflation and would
ultimately derail growth in the longer term,” said Kaspar
Richter, World Bank lead economist for Russia, presenting the
report in Moscow.

Feb 21, 2013

Russia needs financial police to combat illegal capital flight

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia needs to create a specialized financial police force to combat illegal capital flight and monitor state spending, Alexander Bastrykin, the country’s top investigator, said on Thursday.

Bastrykin, the head of Russia’s Investigative Committee, appeared to be responding to concerns raised by the central bank over illegal schemes to siphon tens of billions of dollars out of the country each year.

Feb 20, 2013

Russian rate cuts depend on inflation-cbank chief

MOSCOW, Feb 20 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank can only
consider cutting interest rates when inflation falls, its
chairman said on Wednesday, resisting pressure for quick
reductions to boost a flagging economy.

The central bank has faced criticism from business and
politicians for refusing to loosen monetary policy, including
from the country’s president Vladimir Putin.

Feb 12, 2013

Russian central bank holds all rates, warns on inflation

MOSCOW, Feb 12 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank left all
its policy rates on hold at its monthly meeting on Tuesday,
resisting political pressure to ease policy and warning that
inflation would stay above target for an extended period.

Analysts had expected the central bank to hold rates after
inflation rose above 7 percent in January, feeding doubts about
its chances of achieving its 5-6 percent target range for 2013,
and the rouble continued to strengthen slightly to 34.74 against
a euro-dollar basket after the announcement.