Russia just slashed rates

Russia just slashed rates for the first time in almost a year.

The Central Bank of Russia cut its benchmark one-week repo rate to 10.50%, down from 11%.

Rates have been unchanged since August 2015.

“There is more confidence in the steadily positive trends in inflation dynamics,” the central bank said in the accompanying statement.

Additionally, the bank once again noted that future considerations for further rate cuts will be based on estimates for inflation risks.

“Looking ahead, the key point is that today’s move is likely to be the start of a series of interest rate cuts,” wrote Capital Economics’ Neil Shearing and Liza Ermolenko in a note to clients after the decision.

“The central bank will have room to lower interest rates further — indeed, a failure to do so would lead to a sharp rise in real interest rates that could snuff out the nascent economic recovery,” they added. “All told, we expect the one-day repo rate to be cut to 9.0% by the end of this year and to 6.0% by end-2017.”

The ruble is up by 0.4% at 64.6032 per dollar as of 8:49 a.m. ET. The currency has gained almost 15% against the dollar this year.

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