As rouble falls, claims that Russian banks refusing to allow customers to withdraw their money

Image of Russian roubles. Credit: Roman Malanchuk/Shutterstock.com

Russian banks are allegedly refusing to allow customers to withdraw their money as the value of the rouble falls sharply.

 

Online reports claim that Russian banks are refusing to allow customers to withdraw money from their accounts. There have been suggestions that Vladimir Putin ordered the funds to be frozen in order for the money to be available for his regime’s use. Video footage posted on social media showed angry people purportedly queuing to take money out.

Alexei Zabotkin, the Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank (CB) of the Russian Federation, during an interview with RBC –  due to be published on December 27 – confirmed the drop in the value of Russian currency.

According to Zabotkin, the rate “is fluctuating in the range that has been observed since about the end of May this year. There is a deterioration in external conditions and a decline in oil prices. This is a weighty enough reason for the exchange rate to weaken somewhat”, he admitted.

Every 10 per cent movement in the exchange rate will raise inflation by 0.5-0.6 per cent he pointed out. “But at the same time, with the proviso that these 0.5-0.6 per cent drops are not realised instantly, but are stretched over time for 6–12 months”, added the deputy chairman of the Central Bank.

Since December 5, the EU embargo on oil from Russia came into effect, setting a maximum ceiling of $60 per barrel. Last week, the exchange rates of major currencies on the Russian market updated multi-month highs.

The Russian national currency weakened by almost 20 per cent against the dollar and the euro. Anton Siluanov, the head of the Ministry of Finance blamed the fall of the rouble on the growth of imports.

In the week from December 12 to 16, the rouble weakened from 62.8 to 64.65 against the dollar and from 66.37 to 69.1 against the euro. Then, in the week of December 19, the fall of the rouble accelerated.

On the first day of trading on the stock exchange after the weekend, the Russian currency passed two critical levels – at 65 and 67 roubles to the US dollar. Finally, on December 21, it passed the mark of 70 roubles per dollar and 75 roubles for the euro. On December 26, the rouble is trading at around 68.2 roubles per dollar and 72.4 roubles for the euro, as reported by kommersant.ru.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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