The ruble is tumbling

The
Russian ruble is plunging.

The currency is down by 0.6% at 64.7235 per dollar as of 7:28 a.m. ET.

Earlier in the day, Russian President Vladimir Putin unexpectedly fired his chief of staff and one of his closest allies, Sergei Ivanov. He was appointed “special envoy for transportation and environment.”

This is one of the highest-profile reshuffles at the Kremlin in some time.

Ivanonv was once considered a possible successor to Putin, although ultimately Dmitry Medvedev was chosen to run for president in 2008.

The new chief of staff is 44-year-old Anton Vaino, who worked in Putin’s protocol department and was recently Ivanov’s deputy.

As for the rest of the world, here’s the scoreboard as of 12:06 p.m. ET:

  • The euro is down by 0.1% at 1.1149 against the dollar after Euro-area GDP grew 0.3% in the second quarter, according to Eurostat’s flash estimate, in-line with expectations. The region saw a slowdown from the first quarter, which experienced growth of 0.6%. Germany’s economy posted growth of 0.4%, while Italy’s came in flat.
  • The US dollar index is little changed at 95.86 ahead of retail sales, which crosses the wires at 8:30 a.m ET.
  • The Japanese yen is little changed at 102.03 per dollar.
  • The British pound is flat at 1.2956 against the dollar.

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