Tag Archives: Economy

Russians Less Likely to Protest as Their Situation Deteriorates, Urnov Says

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, March 4, 2015) It is an axiom in most countries that people will protest when their living conditions decline and that assumption underlies current Western policy toward Moscow, but Mark Urnov, one of Russia’s leading political analysts, argues that the situation in Russia is different and that Russians are less rather than […]

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Screenwriter Alyona Barsukevich: ‘If I’m fired I’ll be in serious trouble’

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Yekaterina Sinelschikova, RBTH – March 4, 2015) RBTH continues its Coping with the Crisis series, a collection of stories about how people of different social groups are surviving the economic crisis and how their lives have changed. This time we speak to a young specialist, screenwriter Alyona Barsukevich, who admits that it is […]

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Foreign Russia Investors Warn Over Nemtsov Killing

Boris Nemtsov file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Howard Amos – March 3, 2015) Businessmen and investors said Monday that the killing of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov by the walls of the Kremlin last week will further worsen Russia’s battered investment climate and create more uncertainty in a market suffering from Western sanctions and an economic recession. “We are already in a period […]

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WHITE HOUSE PRESS RELEASE: Notice – Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Ukraine

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

The White House Office of the Press Secretary For Immediate Release March 03, 2015 Notice — Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Ukraine On March 6, 2014, by Executive Order 13660, I declared a national emergency pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701-1706) to deal with the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national […]

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War in Ukraine obstructing Russian economic recovery, say analysts

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – March 2, 2015) The war in Ukraine is impeding attempts to improve the business climate in Russia, according to the head of the Moscow State University Department of Economics, Alexander Auzan. The Russian authorities therefore have to invest in infrastructure projects in order to overcome the crisis, say analysts. […]

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Interfax: Over 73 percent of Russians admit crisis in Russia

Tower and Building Inside Kremlin

(Interfax – February 27, 2015) A public opinion poll conducted by the Institute of Priority Regional Projects in February 2015 4 showed that three-fourths of Russians see the situation in the country as a crisis, Nikolai Mironov, general director of the Institute, said. The poll surveyed 1,600 Russian citizens aged older than 18. It was conducted in 120 populated areas […]

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Ukraine Left Behind as Russian Stock Gains Are Unmatched

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Elena Popina – February 26, 2015) Russia is emerging as the world’s best stock market after putting in the worst performance last year. For neighboring Ukraine, the second-biggest loser in 2014, there’s no sign of such a turnaround yet. Russia’s dollar-denominated RTS Index has soared 15 percent in 2015, while the Ukrainian Equities Index is last […]

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No, Obama, Russia’s Economy Isn’t ‘in Tatters’

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Leonid Bershidsky – February 26, 2015) Western politicians and pundits should be more careful with their predictions for the Russian economy: Reports of its demise may prove to be premature. Bashing the Russian economy has lately become a popular pastime. In his state of the nation address last month, U.S. President Barack Obama said it was […]

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Russia’s dependence on oil prices may threaten national security – official

Nikolay Patrushev file photo

(Interfax – February 25, 2015) Moscow, 25 February: Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev thinks that the aim of the Western sanctions is to put pressure on the development of Russia’s mineral resource base, while Russia’s dependence on oil and gas prices may pose a threat to its national security. “The aim of the sanctions is to put pressure on the […]

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Ukraine Risks Losing IMF Support for Aid If War Escalates

Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Andrew Mayeda – February 26, 2015) Ukraine risks losing support from IMF member countries for a proposed $17.5 billion bailout if the conflict in the former Soviet republic continues to escalate, according to two people familiar with the matter. The new four-year loan program is awaiting approval by the International Monetary Fund’s executive board, which represents […]

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Over 70% of Russians feel economic crisis effects – poll

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Interfax – February 24, 2015) The share of Russians acknowledging the ongoing economic crisis has grown to 71 percent, from 62 percent in January, the Public Opinion Foundation said. Some 14 percent of 1,500 respondents polled in 100 populated localities in 43 regions on February 14-15 claim they do not see any signs of a crisis (down from 20 percent […]

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Russia Dumps $22 Billion in U.S. Bonds to Slow Economy’s Slide

Portion U.S. Treasury Department Building Facade, North Side, with Sculpture of Alexander Hamilton

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Howard Amos – February 20, 2015) Moscow sold a total of $45 billion of U.S. treasury bonds in 2014 as relations with Western governments reached a post-Soviet nadir over the Ukraine crisis. Russia jettisoned $22 billion worth of U.S. treasury bonds in December as the Kremlin scrambled for cash to battle a plunging ruble and […]

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It’s the economy, stupid

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – MACRO ADVISER: Chris Weafer – February 17, 2015) Chris Weafer is Senior Partner at Macro-Advisory, which offers bespoke Russia-CIS consulting. Bill Clinton famously won the first of his two presidential elections using the slogan: “It’s the economy, stupid”. He recognised that while support for the first Gulf War had been strong, people were starting […]

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Russian economy to enter period of lengthy decline in 2015 – Economic Ministry

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – MOSCOW, Feb. 17, 2015) The Russian economy will enter a period of lengthy decline in 2015, the Economic Development Ministry said in its updated forecast. “If major geopolitical risks and hypotheses that oil will average at $50 a barrel persist, then GDP could fall 3%. According to forecasts, the economy will enter a period of lengthy decline in […]

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Entrepreneur Alexei Gisak: ‘You have to work much harder now’

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Yekaterina Sinelschikova, RBTH – February 17, 2015) RBTH is launching People in Crisis, a series of stories about how people of different social groups are surviving the economic crisis and how their lives have changed. Our first installment features businessman Alexei Gisak – co-founder of the pan-Asiatic fast-food chain Wokker in Moscow. In […]

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Russia in Far Worse Shape than Most Assume, Moscow Commentator Says

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, February 15, 2015) Vladimir Putin’s bombast and aggressiveness both is rooted in and helps conceal the underlying reality: “the situation of Russia is much more difficult than it appears,” as even the most superficial examination of Russian realities demonstrates, according to Moscow political analyst Vasily Zharkov. In a commentary in yesterday’s “Novaya […]

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Ex-Finance Minister Kudrin Steps Into Spotlight as Russia’s Crisis Grows

Alexei Kudrin file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Howard Amos – February 16, 2015) Former Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin took part in an anti-crisis meeting chaired by President Vladimir Putin on Friday in the latest sign that the Kremlin insider turned government critic is playing a more prominent role in economic decision making. The gathering at Putin’s Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow also […]

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Putin Lets Consumers Feel Pain as Russian Slump Deepens: Economy

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Anna Andrianova – February 15, 2015) Russian households are bearing the brunt of the blowback from the crisis in Ukraine and a tailspin in oil prices, setting the stage for the biggest drop in consumption in more than two decades that will deepen the country’s recession. Crushed by a 44 percent slump in the ruble in the past […]

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Novak: inability to borrow worse than low oil prices

oil-well-250-blm

MOSCOW. Feb 16 (Interfax) – The lack of lending sources is having a worse effect on the Russian oil industry than the low price of oil, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in an interview with Interfax. “The main issue is the lack of lending resources, sources of financing, not the price of oil. Accordingly, due to the lack of financing, […]

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Russia’s investment climate plummets

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – PERSPECTIVE: bne IntelliNews – February 16, 2015) [Charts here http://www.bne.eu/content/story/perspective-russias-investment-climate-plummets] A survey into Russia’s investment climate by Moscow-based Detail Communications found that investment confidence has halved since the crisis hit. However, a third of respondents – a mix of portfolio managers and analysts from some of the most prominent investment banks, asset management firms […]

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Would a Ukraine Peace Deal in Minsk Save the Russian Economy?

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Howard Amos – February 12, 2015) U.S. President Barack Obama has claimed the Kremlin’s role in the Ukraine crisis brought the Russian economy to its knees. So, if a peace accord is reached in Minsk on Wednesday will it reboot the Russian economy? Hopes are high that a gathering of Russian, French, German and Ukrainian […]

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Russians facing soaring prices as inflation surges into double digits

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan – February 11, 2015) Russia’s consumer price inflation hit 15 percent in annual terms in January, the highest rate since February 1999, on the back of the sharp decline in oil prices last fall and the consequent collapse of the Russian ruble in December. Future fluctuations in the inflation rate are […]

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Russia opposed to restructuring of Ukraine’s debt – finance minister

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – Istanbul, February 10, 2015) Ukraine has asked Russia to agree to a restructuring of its debt, but it is in the Russian Federation’s interest to recover the currency assets it invested in Ukrainian eurobonds, and Russia is not willing for the repayment of these debts to be deferred or delayed, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov has told journalists. […]

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Interfax: Russia sees risk of global economic slowdown due to low oil prices – minister

Oil Well file photo

ISTANBUL. Feb 10 (Interfax) – Russia warned G20 finance ministers meeting in Istanbul about the risks of a slowdown of global economic growth as a result of the drop in oil prices and called for a deeper analysis of the impact that the drop in prices has had on the economies of various countries, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said […]

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So much for the afterglow: Why Sochi’s economic boost failed to materialize

File Photo of Sochi Olympics Banner Near Highway in Warm Weather with Vehicle and Cyclicsts Nearby

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – February 7, 2015) The Winter Olympic Games in Sochi were supposed to give an impetus to the development of the Russian economy, with the Central Bank anticipating that Russia’s GDP would grow by 1.8 percent in 2014, partly as a result of the Olympics. However, observers say that sanctions […]

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Interfax: Russians mostly worried about economic problems, inflation and price rises – poll

File Photo of Older Russian Woman Shopping in Grocery Store

(Interfax – February 9, 2015) Economic problems and inflation rates leading to soaring prices are Russians’ biggest worries as mentioned by 23 percent and 22 percent of respondents respectively in a recent poll held by the Public Opinion Foundation. Compared to December 2014, the share of Russians upset by economic problems has grown by 9 percent. The Foundation polled 1,600 […]

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Don’t Expect Bread Lines From Russia’s Crisis

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Peter Hobson – February 6, 2015) Despite dire economic forecasts, Russia will escape high unemployment and social unrest this year thanks to an exodus of migrant workers, clever politics and a flexible shadow economy, analysts said. Officials are braced for layoffs. Russia must “prepare for the fact that people will become unemployed,” Deputy Prime Minister […]

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Russians appear blasé toward sanctions

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Henry Kirby in London – February 6, 2015) [Chart here http://www.bne.eu/content/story/bnechart-russians-appear-blase-toward-sanctions] A recent poll by Russia’s Levada Center has shown that Western sanctions left scarcely more of an impression on Russians than their New Year holidays did. As the bne:Chart shows, when asked January 23-26 what they considered the most important event of the […]

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How Russians are surviving the crisis

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Yekaterina Sinelschikova, RBTH – January 30, 2015) Residents of Russian provinces outside of Moscow and St. Petersburg have started feeling the impact of the weak economy on their pocketbooks. Experts say that all social strata, rich and poor alike, are already beginning to suffer as a result of the economic crisis. Retirees and […]

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NEWSWATCH: Inside Putin’s Head: The Crisis in Russia and Ukraine and Worst-Case Putin Scenarios

Kremlin and Environs Aerial View

[“Inside’s Putin’s Head: The Crisis in Russia and Ukraine and Worst-Case Putin Scenarios” – Gordon M. Hahn – gordonhahn.com – January 31, 2015] Gordon Hahn considers the impact of the conflict in Ukraine and economic repercussions on the stability and viability of Russia’s Putin regime. The … Russian-NATO proxy war in Ukraine along with the Russian-Western economic cold war could destabilize Russia’s […]

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NEWSWATCH: Morgan Stanley thinks Russia’s doomed

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

[“Morgan Stanley thinks Russia’s doomed” – BusinessInsider.com – Elena Holodny – January 30, 2015] Business Insider reports on Morgan Stanley’s pessimistic Russian economic forecast: Morgan Stanley has a short message for Russia: you’re doomed. This past week hasn’t been easy for the Russian economy: … Thursday … EU foreign ministers decided to extend … sanctions on Russia by six months. Additionally, the Central Bank slashed […]

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BNE Conference Call: West needs new tactics to deal with Russia over Ukraine (Erik Berglof, Edward Lucas, Sir Andrew Wood, Ben Aris, Professor Michael Ben-Gad, Pippa Malmgren)

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – January 29, 2015) Participants at a bne IntelliNews debate in London expressed frustration with the failure of Western sanctions over Ukraine to modify Russia’s behaviour so far, and some suggested it is time to try new tactics. “We are reinforcing all the bad traits in Russia,” said Erik Berglof, director of the Institute for […]

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Russia gambles on $21 billion plan to save ailing economy

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH- January 27, 2015) The Russian authorities are to spend some $21 billion to rescue the country’s economy. The money will be used mainly to capitalize major banks, support the agricultural sector and fund construction, and will be allocated from the federal budget and the National Wealth Fund, the repository of […]

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S&P downgrades Russia to junk

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – January 27, 2015) Standard & Poor’s downgraded Russia’s credit rating to junk status late on January 26, a move which precipitated the rouble’s fall by more than 6%. S&P lowered Russia’s credit rating to BB+, one step below investment grade, as renewed fighting in Ukraine raised the threat of tighter Western […]

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Russia now in extremely difficult economic condition, but could use this for reform – Shuvalov

Igor Shuvalov file photo

(Interfax – January 23, 2015) The Russian economy is currently in extremely difficult economic condition, and Russia’s problems should not be underestimated, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said at Sberbank’s business breakfast at the Davos forum. “Russia is currently in an extremely difficult situation. Our economic situation isn’t good,” he said. There are different development scenarios for the […]

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Deputy Prime Minister Shuvalov Sees Hard Landing for Russia

Igor Shuvalov file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Olga Tanas, Ott Ummelas, Anna Andrianova – January 23, 2015) Russia is in an “extremely difficult” economic situation and faces a worse crisis than in 2008-2009, according to First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov. The country must prepare for a hard landing, Shuvalov said at a breakfast organized by the nation’s biggest lender, OAO Sberbank (SBER), […]

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Fall in oil prices could shrink Russia’s GDP by five percent

Oil Well file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – January 21, 2015) Russian experts say that due to a six-year low in oil prices, Russia’s economy could contract by up to five percent in 2015. Moreover, the situation drastically differs from the 2008-2009 crisis when Russia was not as dependent on oil prices or under sanctions. In the […]

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Business New Europe: Russia prepares RUB1.375 trillion anti-crisis plan

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – January 22, 2015) Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has approved the provisional version of an anti-crisis plan drawn up by the government. According to media reports, the plan involves recapitalisation of banks, provision of state guarantees, support measures for state development bank VEB and diverse sectors, changes to state procurement laws and […]

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Russia To Face Same Old Questions at Davos In Chillier Atmosphere

File Photo of "World Economic Forum" Display at Davos from Past Session

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – January 21, 2015) As the World Economic Forum kicks off in the Swiss alpine town of Davos on Wednesday, Moscow’s delegates will be working hard to convince participants that Russia is still a sound investment despite tensions over Ukraine and a faltering economy. Speaking at a curtain-raising news conference last week, Klaus […]

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A Tour Through Russia’s Five Poorest Cities

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – January 21, 2015) While Moscow offers some wealthy residents a level of luxury on par with other world capitals, urban life in the dozens of other cities across Russia is quite another story. A study released this week offers a peek into this other side of urban living in Russia. Published by […]

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Russia in for recession, high inflation even if oil rebounds to $80-$90 – RenCap

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Jan 21 (Interfax) – The Russian economy will not see any growth and inflation will remain high in 2015 even if oil prices rebound to $80-$90 per barrel, economists at Renaissance Capital believe. At an oil price of about $60, which is the investment bank’s baseline scenario, Russia’s GDP will contract by 4.3% in 2015 and average annual inflation […]

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Interfax: In 2008 crisis also came from abroad, Russia resolved problems by itself – Putin

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Desk

NOVO-OGARYOVO. Jan 21 (Interfax) – The current, critical situation in the Russian economy was provoked from abroad, President Vladimir Putin believes. “I want to remind you that this is not the first situation of its kind which we are going through. We went through the same thing in 2008 and 2009. Then the crisis also came from the outside, it […]

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Ten New Laws That Will Affect Your Life in Russia in 2015

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – January 21, 2015) New year, new you: An expression that has taken on a special meaning for those living in Russia, where a plethora of new laws – many with a direct impact on the daily lives of citizens and residents – entered into effect on Jan. 1. The Moscow Times has […]

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Double trouble – Russia 2014 vs 2008

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – COMMENT: Peter Szopo of Erste Asset Management – January 20, 2015) [Charts here http://www.bne.eu/content/story/comment-double-trouble-russia-2014-vs-2008] History, they say, does not repeat itself – it rhymes. Even if this were true, history’s rhymes are clunky at best. While Russia’s current crisis has obvious parallels with the turmoil in 2008, such as the drop in oil prices, […]

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Russia Beyond the Headlines: Is a banking crisis looming in Russia?

Russian Central Bank file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – January 20, 2015) The Russian government will supply banks with nearly $15 billion to help stave off a possible financial crisis. Only banks that are willing to increase credit in the production sector of the economy will be eligible to receive the money. In such a way the government […]

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Business New Europe: Pain but no disaster in store for Russia, says Rencap

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – January 20, 2015) If the average price of oil in 2015 is $60 then Russia’s economy will contract by 4.3% and the ruble will be RUB56.4 to the dollar, say analysts at Renaissance Capital in a note released on January 20 exploring different oil price scenarios. Oil prices have fallen from […]

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Interfax: Russians begin to feel economic crisis – poll

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – January 19, 2015) Almost two-thirds of Russian citizens (62 percent) think that the country is living through an economic crisis although it has no effect on their finances as of yet, the Public Opinion Foundation said. The crisis mostly manifests itself in Moscow (70 percent) and cities with a population of 50,000 to 250,000 (71 percent), said 1,500 […]

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Business New Europe: Russia’s tech sector defies downturn

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow – January 16, 2015) Most of Russia’s economy will be in the proverbial dustbin in 2015, except for the technology sector. The gadget-loving Russians have been driving the explosion of e-commerce in recent years, which is now starting to spill over into technological innovation and software development. Instead of the […]

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Moscow Times: Russian Oil Firms Can Weather $50 Oil

Oil Well file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – January 16, 2015) If oil stays at its current price through this year, Russia’s gross domestic product will likely shrink more than 6.5 percent, but Russian oil companies will continue to make a profit at even lower prices, analysts at the Gaidar Economic Forum said Thursday. Oil prices climbed to $48.62 per […]

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Business New Europe: Russia’s output will slump sharply in 2015, but what about Ukraine?

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe MOSCOW BLOG – bne.eu – Ben Aris – January 16, 2015) “Russia’s GDP is likely to plunge in 2015. Indeed, it would be prudent to expect a slump on the order of 10%. In many ways, Russia’s financial situation is eerily similar to the fall of 2008, when then-Prime Minister Vladimir Putin called his country a safe haven […]

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