Russia Sanctions, Ruble Woes Raise Cost of Putin’s Ukraine Gamble

People walk past a display with currency exchange rates in central Moscow, Dec. 1, 2014 (AP photo by Alexander Zemlianichenko).
People walk past a display with currency exchange rates in central Moscow, Dec. 1, 2014 (AP photo by Alexander Zemlianichenko).
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December has been a brutal month for the Russian economy. On Dec. 1, the value of the ruble, already at a historic low, experienced its steepest one-day drop since the 1998 financial crisis. The exchange rate with the dollar remains high, and there are no signs of improvement in a slide that has seen the Russian currency lose over 40 percent of its value since the beginning of the year. On the same day, the Ministry of Economic Development announced that Russia would be in recession through at least 2015; quickly chastised by the Kremlin, the ministry removed the offending […]

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