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Russian banks increase liquid forex assets by $8.5 billion in Jan

Russian banks increased their liquid assets held in foreign currencies by $8.5 billion in January to $53.5 billion, the central bank said on Monday, in a sign lenders may try to boost their forex shield in light of fresh sanctions threat. The United States is considering new sanctions against Russia, proposing to cut some of its top banks from dollar transactions and reducing their ability to service dollar-denominated obligations, sources told Reuters. Banks’ liquid forex assets, such as cash held by lenders directly and in the central bank as well as short-term loans and other non-rouble tools which could be easily claimed, stood at $45 billion in December, the central bank said in a report.

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