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Russian ruble hits 12-month low against dollar

Russia's high inflation persists in January data
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The Russian ruble on Friday fell to its lowest rate against the dollar in a year, dipping to 82 rubles to the US unit on the Moscow Stock Exchange (MOEX).

Russia has been under massive sanctions imposed over the Ukraine offensive for more than a year.

Russian President Vladimir Putin — who has until now said Moscow is largely resisting the sanctions — conceded last week that the punishments could have “negative” consequences for his country.

The dollar was trading at 82 rubles on the Moscow exchange office (MOEX) at 0740 GMT.

It last dipped that low in April last year, two months after the Kremlin launched its Ukraine operation.

Russia’s Finance Minister Anton Siluanov on Wednesday linked the rate to the inflows and outflows of foreign currency to Russia.

“These changes are associated with an increase in imports or with a reduction in export procedures,” he said in an interview on state television.

He added the trend had been fluctuating in recent months.

Siluanov said the exchange rate “adheres to market principles, and completely floats in the conditions of changing foreign economic conditions.”

Asked if Russians should be worried, he said the country could count on cash inflows from the energy it continues to sell on the global market.

“It is a signal that there will be more currency coming to the country, which means the exchange rate of the ruble will have a tendency for strengthening,” Siluanov said.

Russia has said it is adapting its economy to Western sanctions, a process it hopes to finish by 2024.

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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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