S&P slashes Russia's economic growth forecasts amid weak oil prices

 
Jessica Morris
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Russia is the world's third largest oil exporter (Source: Getty) (Source: Getty)

Credit ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) has said that oil prices remaining lower for longer will punish Russia's economy.

S&P slashed its forecasts for Russia's economic growth from -2.6 per cent to -3.6 per cent this year, and from 1.9 per cent to 0.3 per cent in 2016.

"The change reflects our expectations of a more prolonged weakness in domestic demand due to lower--and more volatile--oil prices, and tighter fiscal and monetary policies through end-2016, compared with our previous assumptions," Tatiana Lysenko, senior economist at S&P, said.

Read more: IEA says oil demand falling lower than expected

"We now anticipate a weakness in private consumption to extend into 2016, and an only marginal recovery in capital spending next year, helped by improved corporate profit margins and a slowdown in deleveraging."

Countries such as Russia, which rely on their oil exports, have struggled since crude began to slide. Oil prices fell from a peak of around $106 per barrel in June 2014, and are currently hovering at about $50 per barrel.

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