It is the start of another cold Russian winter, the rouble is falling and economic prospects are as bleak as the weather forecast. 

The Central Bank responded with a desperate move - interest rates were raised from 10.5 percent to 17 percent. The Russian currency has now lost more than 50 percent of its value which will lead to a crippling rise in the cost of imports. 

Finally, it seems, Western sanctions have made their point: President Vladimir Putin will not get away with his annexation of Crimea and the interference in Ukraine. But this is a heavy penalty for the Russian people to pay. Many have taken out mortgages in US dollars, and with the rouble's fall, their repayments have doubled. 

In all the chaos, gas giant Gazprom slipped out a statement saying it would fire up to 25 percent of its workforce.

And there could be an international price to pay as well: Russian corporations have taken on debt from Western institutions. It is estimated these Russian companies need to repay $650bn, and given they are shut out of international markets right now, they cannot refinance their debt. It has often been mentioned that Vladimir Putin would use the default of loans to punish the West.

So how will Vladimir Putin react to the economic crisis? And how will Russia's currency crisis impact the global economy? 

After the interest rate hike failed to work, Russia began to spend billions of dollars from its sizable reserve fund to stabilise the currency. Patricia Sabga from Aljazeera America finds out how much of its rainy day fund it can actually deploy. Al Jazeera's Rory Challands looks at why Russians have rushed to the shops as the currency tanks. And Nicholas Spiro, the managing director of Spino Sovereign Strategy, talks about Russia's decline, Ukraine's role, and Putin's reaction to the rouble's collapse.

Black gold in decline?

The falling oil price is a big factor in the Russian crisis, and it goes beyond Russia. OPEC members have said they can live with lower oil prices, but the impact on stock markets has been pretty devastating. 

In the last three months, Dubai, Qatar and Saudi Arabia's markets have entered into what its called 'bear market' territory: stocks are down more than 20 percent. Dubai was the world's best performing market this year and it is now down 34 percent.

And oil is not the only commodity falling. Gas is also struggling, and that will have an effect on a group of Middle East nations, Russia and the United States. 

Counting the Cost looks at what the Russian fallout means for the rest of the world - including oil prices and Middle East markets. What does it mean to gas exporters? Is a future crisis looming?

Macau's gambling problem

Macau is China's answer to Las Vegas, a gambling hub and magnet for high rollers. But a crackdown on corruption in China and a drop in high-spending tourists from the mainland means takings are down.

This is a worry for many local workers, for whom the casinos are the only game in town.

The  government has been trying to diversify its economy, away from its reliance on gambling. Still, the  casinos account for 80 percent of this enclave's revenue - business that in turn is heavily reliant on China allowing the steady stream of gamblers to come across the border.

Al Jazeera's Rob McBride reports from Macau.

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Source: Al Jazeera