NEW YORK, March 3 — The United States will continue to address potential sources of “leakages” in the sweeping sanctions imposed on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Wednesday during a visit to Chicago.

Yellen said the hard sanctions slapped on Russia were having a significant impact, as reflected in the rouble’s sharp fall. Asked whether energy sanctions could follow, she said nothing was off the table with regard to sanctions.

The rouble, which has lost about a third of its value since the start of the year, touched a fresh record low of 110 to the dollar in Moscow on Wednesday as the country’s financial system teetered under the weight of Western sanctions.

“We will continue to look at how the sanctions work and whether there are leakages and we have the possibility to address them,” Yellen told reporters after a speech at the University of Illinois-Chicago’s Innovation Center.

The former chair of the US Federal Reserve said she knew there were concerns about Russian elites using cryptocurrencies as a possible means to evade sanctions, but said there were laws in place to prevent that from happening.

“That is a channel to be watched,” she said, adding, “But ... many participants in the cryptocurrency networks are subject to anti-money-laundering (laws) and sanctions. So it’s not that that sector is completely one where things can be evaded.”

US sanctions had been designed to keep the pain on Russia to the maximum extent, not on Americans, and Yellen said she did not expect the Russian sanctions to have a major impact on the economic trajectory of the United States. — AFP