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Rouble weakens as oil prices slump

The Russian rouble is edging further down amid a continuing slump in oil prices.

The currency was down about 2% in morning trading in Moscow, floating around 62.8 roubles per dollar.

The rouble has been plunging under a combined blow of slumping oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. Last year, it was the world's worst performing currency along with the Ukrainian hryvnia.

Last week, Fitch Ratings downgraded Russia to the lowest investment grade, citing a worsening economic outlook.

The government has predicted that the economy will drop by more than 4% this year if oil prices remain at their current level.

Russia's central bank has tried to stem the rouble's decline by sharply raising its key interest rate and selling its reserves.

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