Apple halts online sales in Russia due to volatility of the Ruble

Apple earlier this week halted all online sales in Russia due to extreme volatility in the Russian Ruble.

Apple store logo NYC
Credit: David Orban

In a somewhat strange story emanating out of Russia this week, Bloomberg is reporting that Apple has currently ceased the sale of products on its online Russian store due to wild fluctuations of the Russian Ruble.

The iPhone and iPad maker stopped sales from its Web store as Russia’s currency lost as much as 19 percent today, with a surprise interest-rate increase failing to stem a run on the currency. The ruble briefly sank beyond 80 per dollar, and bonds and stocks also tumbled.
 
“Our online store in Russia is currently unavailable while we review pricing,” Alan Hely, a spokesman for the Cupertino, California-based company, wrote in an e-mail today. “We apologize to customers for any inconvenience.”
Business-wise, this of course makes a lot of sense. If Apple's pricing is at a certain Ruble rate, and the eventual conversion rate back into dollars is much lower, Apple's bottom line will be taking a hit if no adjustments are made. And you don't get to be one of the most valuable companies on the planet by staying on the sidelines and seeing on how things play out passively. That said, it shouldn't be all that surprising that Apple keeps a close watch on world currencies in markets that affect their business.
 
As of today, the Ruble appear to be getting stronger, but there's no word yet as to when Apple's online sales in Russia will resume.
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