Over the very short term, Russia is a pariah. Whether it’s their oil, their economy or their sovereign debt, nobody wants to touch it. The rating agency downgrades reflect that outcast nature, and the prices of Russian debt have plummeted reflecting it… People who have assets in Russia or deposits in Russia are toast for now and for some time ahead. They can’t get their hands on money or securities or goods or services. They are outcast and they will over the shorter term freeze to death.
— George Ball, chairman of Sanders Morris Harris, a financial services firm in Houston, speaking to The Washington Post (Fitch downgrades Russia’s credit rating amid Ukraine crisis, says default is ‘imminent’)