MOSCOW: The ruble collapsed against the dollar and the euro on the Moscow Stock Exchange on Monday as the West punished Moscow with new sanctions over the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine.
The ruble fell sharply at the start of trading, reaching 100.96 to the dollar, compared to 83.5 on Wednesday, the day before the invasion of Ukraine, and 113.52 to the euro, compared to 93.5 before the assault.
This came after the ruble-based MOEX index increased the upper trading limit.
That followed an announcement by the West that it would remove some Russian banks from the SWIFT bank messaging system, and freeze central bank assets.
The ruble had already fallen sharply against the main world currencies and many Russians queued at ATMs over the weekend, hoping to withdraw ruble savings and exchange them for foreign currency before rates plunged further.
The Russian central bank on Monday took emergency measures to prop up the economy: hiking the key interest rate to 20 percent from 9.5 percent in order to “support financial and price stability and protect citizens’ savings from depreciation”.
It also announced that Russian resident companies that earn income from exports from Monday will have to sell 80 percent of their foreign currency earnings.
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