Russian President Vladimir Putin is the most powerful person in the world right now, according to the latest ranking from Forbes.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is the most powerful person in the world right now, according to the latest ranking from Forbes.Reuters

Alastair Newton, one of the markets most prominent political analysts, says Russia's President Vladimir Putin has "become a prisoner of a nationalistic policy has adopted anti-Americanism as a cornerstone," but this is unlikely damage the economic stability in the long term.

According to Nomura's senior political analyst, the depreciation in the country's currency, the rouble, is unlikely to deflect the Kremlin from its military stance, even though it will hurt the economy in the medium term.

"In contrast to previous rouble crises, the recent depreciation of Russia's currency is driven at least as much by geopolitics as by economic considerations, in my view," said Newton in his note.

"However, even though its immediate intentions over Ukraine remain unclear, I believe that the Kremlin has opted for an anti-Western stance which makes it hard for it to deviate from its current trajectory.

"I doubt that consequent economic stresses in Russia will put the regime at risk in the near to medium term; but they do, in my view, pose a potential long-term threat to stability."

The note comes on the same day that the Russian central bank said it would intervene in the foreign currency market if it saw a threat to financial stability.

The rouble has been one of the worst performing currencies in 2014, dropping as much as 48% against the dollar. The Bank of Russia said the rouble's decline poses risks to Russia's overall financial stability,

Analysts have also predicted a fresh interest rate hike that could reach 12%, up from the current level of 9.5%.

"For sure, it is the case that the rouble was one of the worst performing emerging market currencies at the start of the year based purely on the economy," said Newton.

"However, it does appear to me to be no coincidence that the latest currency depreciation has come at a time when general tensions between Kiev and Moscow are ramping up; when authoritative Western sources, including the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), are claiming that heavy weapons are again coming across the border from Russia into Ukraine; and when Russia is increasingly sending its military aircraft into NATO airspace in the Baltic region in particular."

"Consistent with ongoing events and how I read Putin's stance at the recent Valdai conference in Sochi, I think it very unlikely that we are about to see a significant shift.

"Putin has, in my view, become a prisoner of a nationalistic policy and which has adopted anti-Americanism as a cornerstone, coupled with his own rhetoric, for example and notably his defence last week of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact which carved up Poland between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in 1939."