The recent rise of the Russian ruble against the American dollar has sparked an intense debate between those who believe it is a temporary phenomenon and those who believe it represents a fundamental change in Russia’s economic situation, Izvestiya reported June 1. Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly Chubais is one of those who believes it reflects a fundamental shift, Moscow television reported May 1, but others in the debate point to seasonal swings, the ruble’s very different performance against European currencies and especially the dollar oversaturation of the Russian economy. There are now almost $100 billion in US currency circulating in the Russian Federation, the experts said. A poll of Moscow and Saint Petersburg residents suggests that Russians side with the pessimists, Rossiiskaya gazeta reported June 1. 85 percent of those queried said they did not believe the government had ended inflation or could stop the ruble’s slide.
Labor Minister Says Russia On “Verge Of Explosion.”