Vladimir Putin's approval rating at record levels | The Guardian

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“With nine out of 10 Russians approving of Putin, the president’s ratings are now better than they were in 2008 … Russian oligarchs were hit hard by [previous] financial crisis, but many rebuilt their fortunes under the “capitalism for friends” system created by Putin. Moscow is now home to more billionaires than any other city in the world. … They are also unusually high compared with the popularity of other world leaders. Only Angela Merkel comes anywhere near Putin, with nearly seven in 10 Germans approving of the chancellor.” Full story here. Also see: Did Putin Sell Out Greece? | Bloomberg View “The support only could have been obtained from a few countries, Russia and China in particular. China was reluctant to help Greece exit. … Russia easily could provide the $10 billion that would be necessary for Greece to switch to the drachma. Even though Russia is smarting from low oil prices, it still has more than $360 billion in foreign reserves. Yet Putin didn’t offer the help.”