Ruble tumbles as Russia sanctions escalate

Investors face a tumultuous start to the week as the war in Ukraine wreaks havoc on the rouble, Russian stocks and British oil giant BP

  • Russian Currency Set to Fall After Swift Network Shutdown
  • Shares of Russian companies and those with exposure to the country are also under pressure
  • BP under the microscope after giving up its 20% stake in Rosneft
  • Financial analysts warn of market turmoil










Investors face a tumultuous start to the week as the war in Ukraine wreaks havoc on the rouble, Russian stocks and British oil giant BP.

The Russian currency is set to crash after the West pledged to cut off part of the country’s financial system from the global Swift network.

Shares of Russian companies and those with exposure to the country – including Evraz, backed by Roman Abramovich on the London Stock Exchange – are also likely to come under serious pressure.

Under pressure: Russian currency set to crash after West pledges to cut part of country’s financial system from global Swift network

BP and its chief executive Bernard Looney will also be under the microscope after it dumped its 20% stake in Rosneft for which it is expected to bear up to $25 billion.

As Vladimir Putin put Russia’s nuclear deterrent forces on high alert, financial analysts warned of market turbulence.

Susannah Streeter of Hargreaves Lansdown said: “The decision to leave Rosneft’s stake will be extremely costly for BP, but the board clearly felt they had no choice but to pay the full price and to keep the company away from Russian aggression.

“The move is expected to further rattle financial markets, with a further wave of anxiety expected following President Putin’s chilling rhetoric.”

The value of the ruble came under intense scrutiny over the weekend after Western governments rolled out an unprecedented set of sanctions.

They included a freeze on Russian Central Bank assets and a commitment to pull the country’s financial institutions out of Swift.

Markets.com chief market analyst Neil Wilson said there was a tremendous amount of pent up stress and uncertainty following the latest developments. He said: “The Russian invasion and the way the charts have fallen since has raised the specter of enormous uncertainty.”

A joint statement from Europe, the UK, the US and Canada on Saturday said they seek to “further isolate Russia from the international financial system”.

The latest barrage of sanctions was unleashed in response to the continued Russian assault on IV and other Ukrainian cities.

AJ Bell analyst Russ Mold said it was a “logical expectation” that the Russian ruble would fall in response to the latest sanctions.

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