Russian corporate profits extend gains in March and well ahead of previous five years

bne IntelliNews May 30, 2021

Russian corporate profits extended their gains from the first two months of this year and made almost twice as much money in March as in any previous March since 2016, according to the latest RosStat figures.

Russian unemployment falls to 5.2%, almost back to pre-coronacrisis levels

bne IntelliNews May 30, 2021

Russia’s unemployment rate fell to 5.2%, its sixth consecutive month of decrease since the out of work rate spiked to 6.4% in August last year, according to the latest RosStat figures.

EU to target Belarusian potash exports

Ben Aris in Berlin May 28, 2021

The EU might ban (or limit) imports of Belarusian potash and other fertilisers as a part of its economic sanctions following the Ryanair flight forced landing and arrest of Roman Protasevich, said EU foreign ministers gathering in Lisbon.

Russian President Putin rules out mandatory vaccination as impractical

bne IntelliNews May 28, 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin ruled out mandatory vaccination as “impractical and impossible” on May 28 as Russians remain some of the least keen people in the world to be inoculated against coronavirus (COVID-19).

COMMENT: Russian inflation is as infectious as the virus

Petr Ter-Avanesyan of Invest Navigator Telegram channel in Moscow May 28, 2021

Russian authorities have suggested that Russia needs to introduce special grocery and food cards. Prices have been soaring over the last six months, especially for food, and the government has resorted to clumsy administrative responses.

RIMMER: The Belgravia banya

bne IntelliNews May 27, 2021

I’m in the Russian Bathhouse in Belgravia, submitting myself to the high-heat, ritualised beating with birch twigs they called the parenie. The furnace and flagellation treatment lasts barely fifteen minutes but the intensity is severe.

COMMENT: Force vs. Smartness – Russia three months before legislative elections

Andras Toth-Czifra in New York May 26, 2021

Russia will hold legislative elections in September this year, along with regional and municipal elections in almost half of the country’s regions. The elections will take place in an environment of unprecedented repression.

Russian Netflix ivi raises $250mn in new capital, IPO could still be considered

bne IntelliNews May 26, 2021

Russia's largest online cinema ivi has announced closing a new funding round of $250mn from both external investors and current shareholders, making it one of the largest private equity deals in recent years.

Ryanair forced landing in Minsk is not the first time planes were ordered down to arrest a passenger

bne IntelliNews May 26, 2021

European politicians erupted in fury after the commercial Ryanair flight was ordered to the ground on May 23 in Minsk and top Belarusian opposition journalist Roman Protasevich was arrested, but it is not the first time this has happened.

Czech former president Vaclav Klaus reportedly secretly sent a loan to Soviet Union after revolution

bne IntelliNews May 26, 2021

Former Czech president Vaclav Klaus has denied he allegedly fulfilled a loan contract agreed by the head of the Czech Communist government, Ladislav Adamec, with the Soviet Union before the Velvet Revolution.

COMMENT: How the Gamestop phenomenon hit Russia

Petr Ter-Avanesyan of Invest Navigator Telegram channel in Moscow May 25, 2021

Russian retail investors inspired by the speculative mania surrounding US videogame company GameStop are piling into the domestic stock market and are increasingly seeking to co-ordinate their activities.

Russia’s Watcom shopping index stages recovery in April and May, shopping only 10% below 2019 levels

bne IntelliNews May 25, 2021

Russia’s Watcom shopping index, which measures foot traffic in Moscow’s largest malls, started to show a stronger recovery between the middle of April and the middle of May, and is approaching levels not seen since 2019.

Russia has met only 8% of export orders for Sputnik V vaccine, vaccination at home behind schedule

Ben Aris in Berlin May 25, 2021

Russia has met only 8% of its international orders for the Sputnik V vaccine, despite boasting it has been approved in over 60 countries.

Bulgaria seeks reset of relations with North Macedonia as Russia weighs into dispute

bne IntelliNews May 25, 2021

Restoring trust with North Macedonia is foreign ministry's top priority, says Bulgaria's new Foreign Minister Svetlan Stoev, but tensions raised again by Russian embassy tweet.

Putin formally accepts Biden’s summit invitation

bne IntelliNews May 25, 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin has formally accepted US President Joe Biden’s invitation to a one-on-one summit, via his representatives during a high-level diplomatic meeting in Geneva on May 24.

MOSCOW BLOG: Russia in May

Ben Aris in Berlin May 24, 2021

Russia’s economy continued to recover in the first three months of this year. Although January and February posted negative growth, the momentum was clearly already growing on the returning optimism as the coronavirus pandemic recedes.

bneGREEN: Russia’s weather goes crazy

bne IntelIiNews May 24, 2021

Russia’s weather has quite frankly gone nuts. There is a heatwave inside the Arctic Circle where the coast is hotter than the beaches of the Mediterranean. And Moscow has just reported its warmest ever May days.

Russian business confidence index rises to zero for the first time in eight years

Ben Aris in Berlin May 24, 2021

Russian business confidence index rises to zero for the first time since 2012, when the index briefly went positive for seven months in a row for the first time ever.

The average income of couriers is up to twice the average regional salary

bne IntelliNews May 23, 2021

E-commerce is booming in Russia, but it relies on an army of couriers that are now earning up to twice the average salaries in Russia’s far flung regions, RBC reported citing a recent study.

Lenta planning more acquisitions in the region as supermarket consolidation continues

Ben Aris in Berlin May 23, 2021

Top five Russian retailer Lenta bought smaller rival Billa on May 19 in a bid to strengthen its position in the two leading markets of Moscow and St Petersburg as Russia’s organised retail sector starts to rapidly consolidate.