US-based IT giant DXC to acquire Russian-founded Luxoft for $2bn

EWDN in Moscow January 15, 2019

DXC Technology and Russia’s Luxoft, two major, NYSE-listed IT service providers, announced a definitive agreement for DXC to acquire Luxoft, reported East-West Digital News (EWDN) in the first week of January.

CEE monthly bond wrap: 2018 bond markets hurt by crisis and sanctions

Ben Aris in Berlin January 15, 2019

International bond issues had a mediocre year in Central and Eastern Europe in 2018. While Central Europe more or less held its own, bond issues in CIS were halved in both volume and size.

The share of Russians that want the government to resign rose to over half in December

Ben Aris in Berlin January 15, 2019

53% Russians said in December that they want the government to resign, up from 33% in November, according to the most recent poll by independent pollster the Levada Center.

Russia sets up a nationwide rubbish management and recycling company

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2019

Dealing effectively with garbage became a political issue in 2018 after 25,000 people took part in a protest over the poor state of a landfill that hosts Moscow’s rubbish.

Leading Russian commercial bank Alfa-Bank valued at $5.1bn in state ordered valuation

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2019

Rumours have been swirling on the Russian bank market that the oligarch owner of Alfa-Bank Mikhail Fridman is in talks to sell up, though this has been denied by the bank.

The sale of new cars in Russia grew for the second year in a row in 2018

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2019

The Association of European Businesses expects growth to continue in 2019, albeit at a slower pace.

Serbia to sign €230mn deal with Russia’s RZD on railway upgrade projects

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2019

Belgrade anticipates fresh support for its railway infrastructure during Russian President Vladimir Putin's upcoming visit.

Netflix paid a record $1mn for the rights to the Russian TV series “Better than People”

bne IntelliNews January 12, 2019

The $1bn reportedly paid by the US film streaming service for rights to the popular sci-fi series would be a record for a media rights sale in Russia.

Russian state-owned banks VTB and Sberbank could use indebted airline Utair to create a new regional airline

Ben Aris in Berlin January 10, 2019

The two state-owned banks have been tasked by the government to set up a new domestic airline, to improve transport links within the country that stretches across eight time zones.

Russian inflation in 2018 at 4.3% over the CBR’s target, but rate hike unlikely

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2019

Russia finished 2018 with inflation of 4.3% in excess of the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) 4% target rate, Rosstat reported on January 10, the central bank is unlikely to react to the price rises until its meeting in March.

Russo-Chinese trade turnover tops $100bn in 2018

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2019

The trade turnover between China and Russia set a new record high in 2018, and is now on the way to reaching the next target of $200bn by 2020.

Ukraine’s Naftogaz filed a new $12bn claim against Russian gas monopoly Gazprom

Ben Aris in Berlin January 10, 2019

Naftogaz CEO Andrei Kobolev said the claim will provide an opportunity for Ukraine to compensate losses from bypassing transit of Russian gas.

Russian inflation, growth to remain low in 2019 says World Bank

bne IntelliNews January 9, 2019

World Bank says that inflation will remain low this year and growth will be 1.5%, the same as in 2018, according to the multilateral’s January 2019 World Economic Outlook.

Which Russian investments paid out the most in 2018?

Ben Aris in Berlin January 9, 2019

Russian daily Vedomosti calculated which investments paid out the most in 2018 and the winner was the stocks and bonds of Russian conglomerate AFK Sistema that returned 128% and 55% respectively

HEATMAPS: Unemployment is mostly defeated but pay is not high enough

Ben Aris in Berlin January 9, 2019

Transition from the socialist system came at an enormous cost for most of the countries in Central and Eastern Europe in terms of unemployment and poverty, but now the fight against unemployment is almost won.

Russia’s ruble opened 2019 at three year low against the dollar

bne IntelliNews January 7, 2019

In 2018, the Russian currency lost 21.1% of its value against the dollar and 15.5% versus the euro.

One in seven workers in Eastern Europe report delayed paychecks

bne IntelliNews January 7, 2019

Part-time workers were disproportionately affected by pay delays, with 22% saying they had received late pay, compared to 14% of full-time workers.

HEATMAPS: Inflation is defeated but the "Never Never index" still too high

Ben Aris in Berlin January 7, 2019

Sky high inflation has been the bane of emerging Europe for most of the last two and a half decades. The beast has been slain in most countries of the region, but the battle continues in others.

Russia's PMI indices cool slightly in December but finish the year on a strong note

bne IntelliNews January 5, 2019

Russia’s economy slowed somewhat as the holiday season started, with the IHS Markit Russia manufacturing and services indices slowing in December from previously strong results in November but remaining above the 50 no-change mark.

Watcom shopping index catches up some lost ground in November

bne IntelliNews January 5, 2019

The index that measures footfall in Moscow’s biggest malls remains at a four-year low despite reaching its second highest level for 2018 in November.