The Russian economy is skidding, and its leaders are giving somewhat contradictory messages, the AP reports. Shortly after President Dmitry Medvedev assured the public today that stock-market troubles don’t “reflect the actual state of the economy,” the chairman of the country’s central bank said “as far as liquidity is concerned, there is some shortfall in the banking sector.”
Russia’s top stock exchanges have both dropped almost 15% since the week started. Medvedev has been on TV twice in two days trying to settle worries over continued stagnation. For his part, Sergei Ignatyev, the reserve chairman, said his organization is more than capable of helping out the struggling banks. Falling oil prices have fueled this crisis; Russia is the world’s No. 2 exporter.