The Russian Market Collapse

Updated February 11, 2017 | Infoplease Staff

1998 News of the World

The crippling economic epidemic spread to Russia when its currency began to plummet in Nov. 1997, finally collapsing the following year. In Aug. 1998, the ruble was devalued and by Aug. 25 had taken its worst fall in four years. In a futile attempt to stem the tide, President Boris Yeltsin dismissed his entire government twice over the course of 1998. Russia's financial emergency quickly spread through the Commonwealth of Independent States, particularly to the Ukraine and Belarus, whose Soviet-style planned economies are highly dependent on Russia. Farther afield, markets around the world dropped, and on Aug. 31 the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 512 points, its second-greatest single-day fall ever.

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