Speculation increased that the Russian central bank (Bank Rossii) will tighten its monetary stance by increasing its key rate for the second consecutive month in order to counter inflation in the country. The deposit rate is forecast to increase by a 25 basis point to reach 3.0 percent, according to analyst's median estimate, while other economists predict that the refinancing rate will increase by the same amount to reach 8.0 percent.

In December, inflation in Russia accelerated to 8.8 percent, the highest level in a year. The Russian government aims to preserve price gains between 6% and 7% this month, while expectations signal that inflation might spike to 9.3 percent, which accounts for the fastest since October 2009.