Ah, I just searched the news, and learned Russia's central bank actually just CUT the rate from 17% to 15%.
So they are indeed giving precedence to economic growth, and letting the ruble take the punishment instead.
I don't think that in the big picture, this rate cut will help much. Russia is nothing like a closed economy, needing many goods and services from other countries. As the ruble drops in value, these imports will become more and more expensive.
Inflation will be high either way, and the GDP growth "benefit" of cutting the core interest rate (in fact, there won't be growth, only slightly less contraction) will be partly canceled by the damage to the economy of more costly imports.
As far as we can see from today, it will probably be something like a year and a half before recovery of oil prices is likely to help Russia out of recession.
I didn't make a headline out of the EU renewing sanctions against Russia, because I so much expected it: Putin's mad "doubling down" by his aggressive assault in Donbass, right at the time the EU was making the decision about renewing, was an invitation for more economic punishment.
What's more newsworthy, is that Urals crude (Russia's benchmark oil) is much cheaper than I thought.
Most of the time in recent years, Urals crude has run about USD 1.50 to USD 2.50 cheaper than Brent. I've been estimating Urals prices, because Urals quotes are hard for me to find, whereas Brent is highly publicized.
In recent weeks, however, Urals is about USD 5.00 cheaper than Brent, so right now Urals is less than USD 43 / bbl ... this is the price Russia WANTS to be at least UDS 95 / bbl.
I used to look at topoilnews.com (the domain is actually registered in Russia), but gave it up as almost useless. For example, right now its most recent Urals quote is for 19 January ... eleven days ago! In the present volatile petroleum market, I'm looking for sources with current pricing.
I've got a very pleasant Brazilian, lives in Indonesia, guest staying with me at the moment, I got talking to his wife this afternoon and it transpires that she is Russian.
We got chatting about the obvious subject and it seems that many Russians aren't great fans of Putin, I mentioned how he is controlling the internet and she was needing to explain to her husband that, online, they're only being allowed to view and read what Putin decides, they're all very suspicious that the truth is being hidden from them, just they can't prove it.
Now there's a surprise, I post what a Russian national has uttered to me and you post contradictory ... as you do to defend Russia vs Ukraine and to draw attention to yourself as you have been doing for all the years that you have been around this forum.
Now Putin may well be the best man to govern Russia but he is most certainly not the best man to govern Ukraine, the Baltic States etc. etc. etc.
This might all be an internet game for you but the tw@t is leading us in to WWIII, now you might want that for your children to grow up in but I most certainly don't want it for my children!
Brit's use Russian launch vehicle to put satellite in orbit while the proletariat gets hammered by sanctions. Again the politically connected should never be inconvenienced. The space station should be used of star wars target practice.
well you know full well russians see the same news as everyone else ... ofcourse i want a good world for my children . a good world would be one without ukraine . the place would be way better being russia . if i was accused of all the crap russia has been and i was putin i would have shut the gas and closed the border and said bugger you all .russia should take the east ukraine and end this rubbish debarcle .... and martin short of a tail wheel problem and a small weight issue the pitts is ready to fly .
In the span of 45 minutes today, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov rewrote the history of the Cold War, accused the West of fomenting a coup in Ukraine and declared himself a champion of the United Nations Charter. The crowd here in Germany laughed at and then booed him, but he didnít seem to care.
For those that believe that Ukraine should not receive military aid,,,,, then Dorothy should have just given the wicked witch of the west the ruby shoes and spared us the next hour and a half. "Surrender Dorothy" and they lived happily ever after. Is that in terms that the current administration can understand? F-o-o-ore!!!!!!
And some extracts of wisdom from the above article:
"Before last year, eastern Ukraine had no history of ethnic conflict. Well-armed 'separatists' emerged on the scene only when Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered them there. The 'civil war' that ensued is an artificial conflict, run by Russian security and enhanced by a sophisticated pan-European disinformation campaign. It will last as long as the Russians want it to last.
But even the United States canít deliver weapons fast enough to push the most sophisticated Russian weaponry out of Ukraine anytime soon. Short of sending the 82nd Airborne division into Donetsk, itís hard to see how even the most high-tech U.S. aid can prevent the establishment of Novorossiya, since in practise it already exists.
We could treat this as a very long-term project, as Merkel suggested on Saturday, build a Berlin Wall around Donetsk in the form of a demilitarised zone and treat the rest of Ukraine like West Germany.
We could impose much harsher, much deeper sanctions. We could cut Russia out of the international payments system. We could enforce our own laws and stop turning a blind eye to Russian money laundering, most of which takes place in European capitals. The city of London and the gnomes of Zurich might pay a price for the loss of Russian clients. But that price will still be far lower than the potential costs of doing nothing."
About the volatile UAH. In recent months the Hryvnia has been steady at 24 = £1, but on Friday, and again today, it has gone from 29 to 38.5 and back - in only one hour! The currency speculators must be very busy.
Juffles...I speak not of rates quoted on sites, I speak of what you actually get in money exchange, again this morning it is 23.50 - $1 For me, my favorite in McDees, the filet-o-fish is down to almost 80 cents and in states ~$3.49. Is this the time for the ....I'm lovin it???????? ))
I was having dinner with my friend yesterday, she was speaking to a collegue (sp)on phone, he is a military doctor on front lines, he cannot say on phone his exact location(tappings)but he has need for compression needles and medical supplies. My friend has arranged through someone in ....yes, California for the supplies. My friends only trouble is to get supplies to her doctor friend, not easy (as mentioned before in another thread), they are thinking of arranging a private car to deliver. When I asked about government helping out her reply was, what government? it is only workings of volunteers that things get done.