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Russian stocks decline as oil prices fell to 2020 lows

MOSCOW, Jan 23 (PRIME) -- The Russian stock market fell on Thursday on the back of a continuing slide of oil prices that hit 2020 lows, analysts said.

The MOEX Russia Index fell 1.05% to 3,141.20, and the RTS index decreased 1.04% to 1,596.11.

“The Russian stock market continued falling, the concern I expressed about a possible correction in Gazprom are coming true and the shares fell by 2%,” Yaroslav Kabakov, director for strategy at investment company Finam, said.

Brent and WTI lost about 1.5% and continued to set new lows for 2020, according to Veles Capital analyst Yelena Kozhukhova, due to the worries about slowing demand. The U.S. stock futures and European markets were neutral.

Kabakov said that much of the oil price decrease was caused by the news about raging coronavirus in China. “However, we can say that if the crisis turns into an epidemic like SARS, the oil prices can fall by U.S. $5 from the last week’s level, judging by the historical parallels. The Brent price has already fallen by $4 from the last week’s maximum to $61.88 per barrel. But taking into account the fact that we are on a market driven by news, sales can stop any moment, as soon as the media hysteria calms down.”

Dmitry Bedenkov, head of the research department of investment company Russ-Invest, said that multi-industry holding Sistema was the leader of the Russian market, rising 4.9% on the news of a possible initial public offering (IPO) of affiliate Ozon and preparation of a new dividend policy.

Novatek grew 1.3% after reporting a 3% increase of the proven reserves, as assessed by an independent expert, the analyst said.

ALROSA fell 1.61% on the news about a 15% annual decrease of production in October–December due to a fall of output on the Yubileinaya and Internatsionalnaya mines.

Below are the MOEX Russia Index’ five most active stocks on Thursday:

Company Change, % Last price, rbl Trading volume, bln rbl
Gazprom -3.55 239.3 17.995
Sberbank -1.05 263.73 10.758
Lukoil -0.98 6590 7.951
Surgutneftegas -3.43 47.8 4.627
Norilsk Nickel -0.77 21146 4.328

(61.8343 – U.S. $1)


23.01.2020 19:10
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