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Vladimir Putin

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  • *Kudrin: Russia to be downgraded to' junk' status next year. MOSCOW, Dec 22- Russia's government has pushed the country into an economic crisis by not tackling its financial problems fast enough, former finance minister Alexei Kudrin said on Monday, warning the full effects would be felt next year. Kudrin-- a darling of investors who is credited with building Russia's...

  • Russia bails out bank following ruble slide Monday, 22 Dec 2014 | 5:44 AM ET

    MOSCOW— Russia has bailed out a mid-sized bank for about $500 million to save it from bankruptcy— a clear sign that the slide in the value of the ruble in the wake of falling oil prices is straining the banking system. The Central Bank said Monday that it will provide a 30- billion ruble loan to help the Trust Bank to continue operating as normal.

  • MOSCOW, Dec 22- Gazprom, Russia's top gas producer, will stick to President Vladimir Putin's urge to sell foreign currency revenues on the domestic market, the company's deputy CEO Alexander Medvedev told reporters on Monday. "This doesn't create any issues for us. We understand this will help to stabilise the rate, "he said.

  • Russia to enter 'deep recession' in 2015?  Monday, 22 Dec 2014 | 4:00 AM ET

    With China's foreign minister offering to help Russia if needed, Neil Shearing, chief emerging markets economist at Capital Economics, discusses how Moscow is fairing, saying 2015 will show a "deep recession" for Russia.

  • MOSCOW, Dec 22- The Russian rouble opened broadly firmer on Monday, supported by higher oil prices and a pause in the panic-selling on the domestic currency market after officials rushed to issue strong verbal support and announce measures to ease the situation. Oil, Russia's chief export, was up, with Brent futures trading above $62 per barrel.

  • Belarus enjoys bonanza amid Russia-West tensions Monday, 22 Dec 2014 | 2:27 AM ET

    MINSK, Belarus— As relations between Russia and the West have sunk to their lowest point since the Cold War, there's one country that's reaping rewards— Belarus, whose authoritarian leader was once dubbed " Europe's last dictator" by the United States and the European Union. Food exports to Russia have been a major hard currency-earner for cash-strapped Belarus,...

  • China foreign minister says willing to help Russia Sunday, 21 Dec 2014 | 10:20 PM ET

    BEIJING, Dec 22- China is willing to help Russia if needed but believes that the country has the ability to overcome its current economic problems, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi was quoted as saying in a state newspaper on Monday. Wang, speaking to reporters over the weekend, said that Russia also had the "wisdom" to get out of difficulties, the official China Daily...

  • Belarus' president promises help for Ukraine Sunday, 21 Dec 2014 | 12:21 PM ET

    MOSCOW— Belarus' authoritarian president on Sunday promised to help Ukraine as it struggles through its pro- Russia separatist insurgency and economic hardships. Ukraine's year of crisis has been unsettling to Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who has ruled autocratically since 1994, and wants to fend off any protest movement like those that...

  • WASHINGTON, Dec 21- U.S. president Barack Obama has rejected the charge that he has been outmaneuvered by Russian president Vladimir Putin, saying in a TV interview due for broadcast later on Sunday that Putin was presiding over "a huge economic contraction" due to the Ukraine crisis. Obama, in an interview with Candy Crowley on CNN's "State of the Union" program...

  • BEIJING, Dec 21- China's trade minister proposed more use of China's currency in settling trade with Russia in the face of a falling rouble to ensure safe and reliable trade, Hong Kong broadcaster Phoenix TV reported on Saturday. Chinese Minister of Commerce Gao Hucheng said the use of China's yuan, or renminbi, has been increasing for several years but western...

  • Falling oil prices worry Algeria Saturday, 20 Dec 2014 | 5:09 AM ET

    ALGIERS, Algeria— With oil prices at their lowest in five years and showing few signs of hitting bottom, Algeria is feeling the pinch. Though its problems are dwarfed by the impact on Russia for example, Algeria may have to rein back many of the policies it has held dear over many years. In many ways, the rule of Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has echoes with...

  • OTTAWA, Dec 19- Canada announced new sanctions against Russia on Friday, including additional restrictions on the export of technology used in the oil and gas industry, saying it was important to speak truth to power. Foreign Minister John Baird also said sanctions were being applied on 11 Russians and nine Ukrainians, due to Russia's actions in Ukraine.

  • Currency war: Where's the next battlefield? Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 2:25 PM ET
    People walk below a board showing currency exchange rates, with a mannequin seen behind a shop window, in central Moscow, Dec. 18, 2014.

    There's a currency war going on and the ruble is just one battle, says "Fast Money" trader Brian Kelly. Where's the next battelfield?

  • *Rouble bounces over 3 percent, oil above $60 a barrel. Wall Street's momentum, hopes that Russia was stabilizing and a recommitment from Japan to its massive stimulus campaign pushed Asian stocks to their best day in 15 months. "We have digested the drop in oil, we have gotten past the Fed, and now we will see what we will do for the rest of the year," said Peter Jankovskis,...

  • BERLIN, Dec 19- German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier expressed concern on Friday that EU sanctions against Moscow for its actions in Ukraine could destabilize Russia and warned against "turning the screw" any further. The comments to German weekly Der Spiegel suggest a possible softening in the stance of Steinmeier, a member of the traditionally...

  • GLOBAL MARKETS-Equities extend rally, oil rebounds Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 11:03 AM ET

    LONDON/ NEW YORK, Dec 19- Equity markets worldwide extended the week's rally on Friday, and oil prices rebounded from recent lows as traders said investors were starting to reduce exposure as the end of year approaches. Wall Street's momentum, hopes that Russia was stabilizing and a recommitment from Japan to its massive stimulus campaign pushed Asian stocks to...

  • Why Russia's crisis could have a ripple effect Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 10:56 AM ET
    The train ferry crosses the Kerch strait from Port Caucasus, Krasnodar region in southern Russia towards Port Crimea.

    Some say the crisis in Russia won't ripple into Europe and the U.S. — we're not buying it, says portfolio manager Hugh Johnson.

  • Putin: Russia military modernization to go ahead Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 10:44 AM ET

    Speaking at a meeting with Russia's top military brass, Putin said the nation's nuclear forces are a "major factor in maintaining global balance," adding that "they effectively preclude the possibility of a large-scale aggression against Russia." The huge military buildup is continuing despite the country's economic woes, triggered by a combination of...

  • BRUSSELS, Dec 19- European Union leaders warned Moscow they are ready to flex their combined muscle and "stay the course" in a long confrontation with Russia if President Vladimir Putin refuses to pull back from Ukraine. In comments that were part warning to Russia, where falling oil prices and Western trade sanctions have brought financial havoc, and part...

  • LONDON, Dec 19- A three-day rally in world share markets started to peter out on Friday as worries emerged that the European Central Bank's money printing plans could come with a number of restrictive strings attached. Officials speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity said the ECB may require countries such as Greece or Portugal to set aside extra money...