Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the US move runs contrary to a "constructive" atmosphere at the Trump-Putin summit last month, and he strongly denied any Russian role in the poisoning in Britain.
In a brief statement, State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said the US had determined this week that Russian Federation used the nerve agent Novichok to poison Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March "in violation of global law" - a move that triggers sanctions under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991.
The sanctions will cover sensitive national security goods, a senior State Department official told reporters on a conference call.
The ruble plummeted to its weakest since August 2016, at 66.73 versus the dollar after the sanctions were announced, shedding 5 percent of its value compared with levels of late last week.More news: Three Miami Dolphins Protest During the National Anthem
Zakharova said the United States was "knowingly presenting demands that are unacceptable to us" as conditions for the sanctions to be lifted. "It can scarcely be associated in any way with the constructive - not easy but constructive - atmosphere at the most recent meeting of the two presidents".
They were aimed at punishing Putin's government for having "used chemical or biological weapons in violation of global law", spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.
Although the U.S. says it is sanctioning Moscow over the Sergei Skripal case, the measures are actually due to internal USA politics which have led to a "sanctions war" in Washington, writer and journalist Neil Clark told RT.
In the meantime, Moscow is threatening to halt exports of rocket engines in retaliation. A ban on Aeroflot flights to the United States could lead to a ban on US airlines traversing Russian airspace. "This is not about different bits of the administration going in different directions".More news: Twitter CEO Gives a Rare Media Interview
In Moscow, the ruble shed as much as 5% against the dollar on Thursday and stocks plunged as much as 9%, led by state banks and national carrier PJSC Aeroflot-Russian Airlines, which risk losing access to USA markets if the sanctions escalate.
It did not introduce new sanctions on the already, heavily punished country at the time.
But the punitive measures triggered a furious reaction from Moscow.
The spokesperson went on to say Russian American relations are at a record low point and the USA continues to deteriorate bilateral ties.More news: Everton Agree Deal to Sign Mina From Barcelona
Under the law, once the government determines that a country has used chemical or biological weapons in violation of global law, it must impose sanctions. This could include downgrading diplomatic relations, suspending state airline Aeroflot flights to the USA, and cutting off almost all exports and imports. Lev Gudkov, director of Russian independent pollster Levada Center, said it was quite possible that Putin would see a boost in his approval rating as a result of the sanctions, even though economic challenges could harm him in the long term. Among other measures, it would put sanctions on any transactions related to Russian energy projects and new Russian sovereign debt, as well ban American individuals and businesses from working with Russian oil projects.