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White House says ruble is being artificially propped up by the Russian central bank By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A picture illustration shows Russian ruble banknotes of various denominations on a table in Warsaw, Poland, January 22, 2016. REUTERS / Kacper Pempel

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House is seeing an “artificial propping up of the ruble” by the Russian central bank and by the Russian government, communications director Kate Bedingfield said on Thursday.

“They are taking artificial measures to keep the ruble propped up,” she said.

Earlier in the day, Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded foreign buyers pay for Russian gas in rubles from Friday or else have their supplies cut.

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