Elvira Nabiullina, Russia’s Central Bank chief, said the brooches she wore this year during press conferences after making decisions on key interest rates were all very carefully chosen.
“I’ve been wearing brooches for a long time, but this year, I was using them to try to signal our understanding of the current situation,” the head of the regulator said in an interview with RTVi, a New York-based privately run TV network broadcasting in Russian.
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Nabiullina’s choice of brooches were a hot issue in 2020 for both Russian and international journalists, who frequently discussed what they might mean, or, indeed, whether they had any meaning at all.
The first brooсh, which was widely featured in the press, had its first outing in February. According to Nabiullina, she made a random choice on this occasion, though, in December, she was asked with what bird she most identified. This piece was in the shape of a stork.
In March, she pinned a brooch in the shape of a Russian roly-poly doll to her jacket. That was believed to be a reference to the steps the bank was taking to support the country’s finance sector during the Covid-19 pandemic. The popular toy was also used as the logo for the section on the regulator’s website that was devoted to crisis response measures.
In April, Nabiullina sported a pin shaped like a house, while, in June, she wore a small dove.
In September, her chosen brooch featured a Play/Pause icon. A wave-shaped pin graced the lapel of her coat in October. Nabiullina said she thinks through the message a particular pin can convey every time she selects one, but sometimes the choice is given too much credence by onlookers.
She didn’t anticipate that her wave-shaped pin would be taken as indicating her concern that the anticipated election victory of Joe Biden could cause geopolitical turbulence, she said.
The beautiful bullfinch she pinned to her jacket last week represented a creature capable of withstanding even freezing weather – “a hardy bird,” according to Nabiullina.
That day, the Central Bank of Russia opted to leave the key interest rate unchanged at 4.25 percent, signaling that further slashes are unlikely, because of the risk of inflation.
When asked about her plans for future message-conveying brooches, Nabiullina said she hadn’t yet decided whether she would continue her tradition or buck the trend.
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