Russia’s central bank has unexpectedly raised interest rates to curb inflation. It was the second hike this year and takes the its benchmark rate to 8.25 percent.
Although inflation in Russia has stabilised somewhat, in April it was up 9.6 percent from the same month last year.
The news boosted the rouble against the dollar to its highest level since the end of 2008.
“The decision has been taken due to the continued high level of inflation expectations, higher than predicted inflation forecasts and also taking into account the affect the situation on global markets can have on Russia,” the central bank said in a statement.
It added: “Further steps regarding changes in the monetary policy of the central bank will depend on the balance between the risks of inflation pressures and slowing economic growth.”