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Putin: US Economic Policies Amount to 'Hooliganism'


Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin addresses the parliament in Moscow, April 20, 2011

Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin addresses the parliament in Moscow, April 20, 2011

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says U.S. economic policies amount to "hooliganism."

Putin, in his annual address to the Russian parliament, said Wednesday that "everything is not so good for our friends in the States." He told the lawmakers to look at the U.S. trade balance in which the country imports more products than it exports, its growing long-term debt, and annual budget deficits.

He said Russia does not "have the luxury for such hooliganism." Putin said Russia has none of that and he hopes the country never will.

But he said that in difficult economic times the United States has "things easier," accusing the United States of turning on presses to print more money and flooding world markets with devalued dollars. The U.S. central bank is currently pumping $600 billion into the American economy through the purchase of government securities.

Earlier this week, the financial services company Standard & Poor's downgraded its economic outlook for the U.S. from "stable" to "negative" on fears that the White House and Congress may not be able to reach a long-term plan to reduce the country's growing total of $14 trillion in accumulated debt.

President Barack Obama and opposition Republican lawmakers have proposed different paths to cut $4 trillion from the debt over the next decade or so. They are planning to negotiate details of a debt-reduction plan in the coming weeks.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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