‘Russia allows ruble to weaken again’

‘Russia allows ruble to weaken again’


Moscow: Russia on Thursday allowed another weakening of the ruble against its dollar-euro currency basket, the eighth effective devaluation since November and third this week.

“The Bank of Russia can confirm" that the band within which the ruble is allowed to trade against the dollar-euro basket had been widened, a central bank source told.

The basket made up of 55% dollars and 45% euros on Thursday was worth the equivalent of 32.99 rubles compared with 32.65 on Wednesday.

The basket had been worth 31.90 rubles in closing trade on Friday.

The Russian currency ruble has been under strong downward pressure since the beginning of the global financial crisis because of a sharp drop in the price of oil, Russia’s main export and the huge outflows of capital.

The devaluations lessen pressure on the bank to buy rubles to maintain the currency’s value, after it spent tens of billions of dollars on the currency markets over the November.

But Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has repeatedly emphasized that the government will continue working to ensure there will be no drastic fall in the ruble as Russia suffered in the 1998 financial crisis.