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Political Futility: Putin Threatens Currency Speculators

Posted on December 5, 2014

The Russian president says the government knows exactly who is profiting from speculation against the Russian ruble, and that the government and central bank have tools to punish them.

“The government knows who these profiteers are. It is time to do something about them,” Vladimir Putin said during his 11th state of the nation address in the Kremlin’s St. George’s Hall in Moscow.

President Putin delivered a staunch warning to speculators looking to make a profit from the ruble’s downward spiral.

The ruble has fallen more than 40 percent against major world currencies this year, and on Monday, took its sharpest fall since the crisis in 1998 that forced Russia to default. The Russian ruble plunged from 50 to 54 against the US dollar.

“The central bank must do everything to reduce speculative activity in the currency market,” Putin said, adding that the time has come for regulators to use tools against those profiting from the demise of the ruble.

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