International Business

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Foreign Currency in Russia Curbed Again: The country's central bank is further restricting use of foreign currency in an attempt to defend the ruble, which crashed last month. A special commission blamed the crisis on the government and commercial banks. The central bank has begun to tighten enforcement of a regulation forbidding the deposit or withdrawal of foreign currencies from Russian banks unless account holders can prove they are exporting or importing the bank notes, a spokesman said. The ruble fell 27% on Oct. 11, but recovered most of its losses two days later. The fall triggered the departure of the finance minister and the central bank governor and led to a doubling in the monthly inflation rate. The Russian Security Council reported to President Boris Yeltsin that the finance ministry, the central bank and "certain" commercial banks engineered the fall of the ruble for their own profit.

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