Russian stocks rallied after the supermarket chain OAO Magnit reported a surge in sales and as OAO Sberbank, the country’s biggest lender, rallied.
The Micex Index of 30 shares climbed 0.4 percent to 1,517.13 by 1:16 p.m. in Moscow, erasing an earlier fall of as much as 0.8 percent. Magnit (MGNT) surged 3.8 percent after reporting a 34 percent jump in first quarter sales. Sberbank (SBER), which represents 15.4 percent of the index, gained 0.7 percent. The dollar-denominated RTS Index added 0.3 percent to 1,626.5.
China reported an unexpected trade surplus last month as the 5.3 percent growth in imports trailed the 9 percent median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey. Exports rose 8.9 percent from a year earlier, more than forecast, leaving a trade surplus of $5.35 billion, compared with a median projection for a $3.15 billion trade deficit.
“This is good news, because it suggests we will be back to 20 percent export growth in April and May,” Charles Robertson, analyst at Renaissance Capital, wrote in an e-mailed report today. “Chinese exports will recover in the coming two months and this will lift Chinese imports too.”
Oil, Russia’s main export revenue earner, fell as much as 62 cents to $101.84 a barrel in New York. Inventories probably increased 2 million barrels to 364.4 million last week, according to a Bloomberg News survey before a U.S. Energy Department report tomorrow. Urals crude, Russia’s chief export blend, hasn’t traded since April 5.
Russian stocks rallied 8.2 percent in the first quarter, the biggest quarterly gain in more than a year on signs the global economy recovery is spurring demand for commodities. The gauge trades at 5.6 times analysts’ earnings estimates for member companies, below the 11.8 ratio for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index.
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