Russian forces civilian ship in Black Sea

How much is one Russian ruble worth?

President Vladimir V. The Russian ruble fell to its lowest level since March 2022 on Monday, soon after Putin launched Moscow’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Amid growing concern about a weakening currency, Russia’s central bank said it would hold an emergency meeting on Tuesday morning to “discuss the level of the key rate.” The bank, which three weeks ago raised its key interest rate by a full percentage point to 8.5 percent, has signaled in recent days that it is ready to raise rates further to curb inflation.

The bank’s announcement slowed the ruble’s depreciation. After weakening to around 102 against the dollar, it strengthened to trade below 100.

The ruble has depreciated about 25 percent against the dollar since the beginning of the year. Its decline has led to fears of rising inflation, and prompted Kremlin cheerleaders in state news media to lash out at the country’s financial authorities.

Maksim S. Oreshkin, Mr. Putin’s economic adviser, wrote A comment column He told Russian state news agency Tass on Monday that “the main source of ruble weakness and inflation acceleration is loose monetary policy” and that “the Russian central bank has all the necessary tools to stabilize the situation in the future.”

“A weak ruble complicates the restructuring of the economy and negatively affects people’s real incomes,” he wrote. “A strong ruble is in the interests of the Russian economy.”

Last week Vladimir Solovyov, a commentator on Russian television and a Kremlin champion, said the ruble’s devaluation was a global joke.

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On Thursday, Russia’s central bank said it would stop buying foreign currencies for the rest of the year, in a move to boost the ruble.

On Monday morning, it followed up with a statement For Interfax It says it “acknowledges the possibility of raising the key rate in the next meetings”. In the afternoon, after the ruble continued to weaken, Sep. The announcement of the Tuesday morning meeting came a month before the bank’s next scheduled rate-setting meeting on the 15th.

Russia’s annual inflation rate hit 4.3 percent in July, and the central bank predicts it will rise to 6 percent by the end of the year.

Worries about the ruble and inflation, Mr. These are the latest financial fluctuations unleashed by Putin’s war. The government’s budget deficits also raise concerns about the sustainability of Russia’s aggressive spending on war.

Despite these challenges, Russia’s economy grew 4.9 percent in the April-June period from a year earlier, the government said Friday, a better-than-expected result and the country’s first annual gain in economic growth since the start of the war. In Ukraine.

In July, the International Monetary Fund mobilized Its prediction Russia’s economic growth in 2023 will be 0.7 percent to 1.5 percent. By 2022, the country’s GDP is projected to contract by 2.1 percent. Russia’s growth was largely driven by government spending on the war effort, which fueled inflation and widened the budget deficit.

After invading Ukraine in February 2022, Russia struggled to plug holes in its economy caused by an onslaught of Western sanctions and an outflow of capital and assets, while the ruble fell to 135 to the dollar. But a spike in oil prices and falling imports helped the ruble recover and led to a trade surplus of $221 billion in 2022.

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This year, surpluses have shrunk and oil revenues have fallen due to Western embargoes and price caps.

Oleg Matsnev Contributed report.

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