Russian News: August 1st, 2008!

RBC, 01.08.2008, Moscow 19:23:51.Bank of Moscow placed 10m bonds of the first series worth a total of RUB 10bn (approx. USD 426.99m), the bank said in a statement. More than 20 bids were filed by banks, both Russian and foreign, and asset management companies on MICEX. The lower end of the range of coupon rates was at 8.74 percent. As a result of the auction, the first coupon rate was set at 9.25 percent per annum. The first coupon payment will total RUB 461.2m (approx. USD 19.69), or RUB 46.12 (approx. USD 1.97) per bond.

RBC, 01.08.2008, Moscow 18:43:24.The Russian stock market closed with most traded securities sliding today. The MICEX index edged down 0.19 percent to 1,492.55 points and the RTS index fell 1.2 percent to 1,943.05 points. Among MICEX’s biggest losers were Rosneft (down 2.37 percent), Sberbank (down 1.56 percent), Gazprom (down 1.23 percent), and Surgutneftegas (down 0.75 percent). At the same time, Norilsk Nickel climbed 5.1 percent, LUKoil rose 1.38 percent, and Severstal gained 2.19 percent.

RBC, 01.08.2008, Moscow 18:27:48.The Moscow City Court has imposed a life sentence on Leonid Nevzlin, a former YUKOS shareholder. The court found him guilty of organizing several murders, as well as of an attempted murder and an armed assault.

RBC, 01.08.2008, Minsk 17:44:12.The Belarus authorities are in talks with LUKoil and Rosneft regarding their participation in the privatization of the Naftan refinery and the Polymir petrochemical producer, both state-owned companies, Vladimir Semashko, the Belarusian First Deputy Prime Minister, said today. One of the conditions of sale, he noted, is that the potential investors need to have sales markets available and raw materials to supply to the privatized companies.

RBC, 01.08.2008, Moscow 13:23:55.The Bank of Russia will raise the reserve requirement starting September 1, 2008, the bank’s press office said. The reserve requirement will be hiked from 7 to 8.5 percent for liabilities to non-resident banks in terms of rubles or foreign currencies, from 5 to 5.5 percent for liabilities to individuals in terms of rubles, and from 5.5 to 6 percent for other liabilities.

RBC, 01.08.2008, Moscow 09:11:19.The export duty on oil has been set at $495.9 per tonne effective as of August 1, 2008. Monitoring data shows that the average price of oil stood at $123.36375 per barrel in May-June, and based on that figure the ceiling rate of duty amounts to $495.936 per tonne. The duty on light refined oil products will be $346.4 per tonne, and $186.6 per tonne on heavy oil products.