rouble
Central bank intervention has failed to avert the slide of the roubleReuters

Russia's rouble slid 0.7% to a record low of 47.7 against the central bank's target dollar-euro basket on Tuesday as analysts predicted the end of currency interventions from the country's central bank.

The Bank of Russia has spent more than $20bn (£12.4bn, €15.8bn) in October as it sought to prop up the tumbling currency but it has been unable to prevent the slide.

Amid Western economic sanctions over the Ukraine crisis, Russia has experienced a shortage of dollars. The rouble's continual decline has provoked speculation that the central bank could abandon its currency interventions when policy makers meet on 31 October to decide interest rates.

"Price action is being increasingly driven by the fear that the central bank could scrap entirely its defence of the rouble, allowing it to freely float and find a natural level," Sberbank's Tom Levinson told Bloomberg. Central bank intervention "is failing to halt the rouble's decline, but is also feeding currency weakness by raising concern over the pace at which foreign currency reserves are being eroded," he said, as quoted by Bloomberg.

Russia relies on energy exports to generate the revenue for more than half of the country's budget.

Oil prices have fallen dramatically since the summer, in conjunction with increasingly tough Western sanctions that have restricted Russian firms' access to global financial markets. Brent crude has tumbled more than 26% since June and weakened to $85.15 a barrel on Tuesday.

Russia has set out plans to adopt a free float on its currency by 2015 although some economists predict that the central bank will leave the currency market before then.