Updated 02:04 a.m. Moscow Time
WASHINGTON, October 11 (RIA Novosti) - There are currently no "fundamental factors" that could cause the national Russian currency to fall, but this possibility should not be completely ruled out, the chief of Russian Finance Ministry's strategic planning department said Friday.
"Talking about fundamental factors, [the ruble] has been gaining pretty fast with the current exchange rate. But it won't be climbing up forever. That means there are no fundamental reasons why the ruble may fall from its current position," Maxim Oreshkin told journalists in Washington
The national Russian currency has been trading significantly low in autumn and slid to its record low this week, trading at 40 rubles against US dollar. On Friday, its rate rose 33.77 kopeks, trading 40.3 rubles.
Oreshkin did not rule out that the ruble could grow weaker on the free market. "For instance, if those who usually sell currencies take a pause and the rest start buying it at a faster than usual rate, its rate can pass the established fixed ratio," he warned, adding that the rate would then rebound to its original notch.
The Russian finance ministry official reminded journalists that this was what happened back in spring 2014, when the ruble first dropped to a record low in the wake of Western economic sanctions but then recovered.
Over the past months, the West has been trying to damage Russia's economy by implementing several rounds of sanctions against it over Moscow's alleged role in Ukrainian crisis. The measures target the country's largest banks, energy and defense companies, as well as some individuals.