Decline in the RU>EN market?
Thread poster: Michael Marcoux

Michael Marcoux  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:57
Russian to English
+ ...
Dec 21, 2015

Over the past year I've seen agencies that used to pay me 10 cents a word for video game translation turn around and offer 6 cents a word for highly technical patent translations (which I've turned down.) I chalked it up to the collapse in USD/RUB exchange rate at first, but most agencies I work with are US based, and paid by US clients. So I was wondering, is anyone else seeing the same downward pressure on rates, or am I alone here? Should I start looking for better clients?

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Vanda Nissen  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 21:57
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
I think, it is related Dec 21, 2015

Hi Michael,

I think, you are right, and we can blame the collapse in USD/RUB exchange rate and the sanctions. You could, probably, look for more community translations in the US, i.e. testimonial evidence given by Russian immigrants. From my experience, they are less affected by the current sanctions. But I do not know whether it is within your scope of expertise.


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Peter Shortall  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
Member
French to English
+ ...
Not just the RU-EN market Dec 22, 2015

I work mainly for UK-based clients in RU-EN and two other language pairs (FR-EN and RO-EN), and have seen signs of penny-pinching behaviour like this from an increasing number of agencies. It affects all of the languages I work with, and it seems to be spreading as managers leave one agency, join another and take these practices (especially haggling) with them. I don't think the problem only affects the RU-EN market, it's just the way a lot of agencies behave nowadays.

And yes, I think you should start looking for better clients.


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Olga Adler
United States
Local time: 05:57
English to Russian
+ ...
the same from the other side Jan 10, 2016

Here in Russia the translation market has plummeted too. My usual clients, translation agencies based in Moscow, complain that they are getting fewer and fewer jobs in English and other European languages. Logically, it's the sanctions as Vanda pointed out.

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Artem Vakhitov  Identity Verified
Estonia
English to Russian
+ ...
The Russian market Jan 21, 2016

The exchange rate collapse must be the main reason together with the overall bad state of the economy. The Western sanctions did contribute (by denying loans to some important client sectors for the translation industry), but not nearly that much. I think that the Russian counter-sanctions could also have an impact locally, albeit a more indirect one.

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Decline in the RU>EN market?

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