Why Russia does not want to default, even in wartime

Behind the fight over whether Russia should be allowed to repay its debts lies an age-old question: Borrowers, even in times of war, want to retain their reputation for making investors whole.

The US Treasury Department this week prevented Russia from repaying a bond it owed on Monday by denying JPMorgan Chase & Co. a sanctions waiver to process the transfer. The Treasury said US banks would no longer be allowed to facilitate payments, but hinted that Russia could find other ways, possibly using non-US banks.


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