Russia Stocks Gain 3rd Day as Stimulus Bets Boost Risk Appetite

Russian stocks rose for a third day as optimism central banks will continue policies to revive economic growth boosted riskier, emerging-market shares.

The Micex Index (INDEXCF) added 0.5 percent to 1,419.75 by 2:23 p.m. in Moscow. OAO Gazprom (GAZP), Russia’s natural-gas export monopoly, gained 1.4 percent to 131.13 rubles, while OAO Sberbank (SBER), the country’s largest lender, rose 1.3 percent to 103.72 rubles.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index headed for the highest close since March 13. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said yesterday that further interest-rate cuts are possible after reducing them to a record low last week. The Reserve Bank of Australia lowered its main rate by a quarter percentage point to 2.75 percent today. The Micex closed at a three-week high on May 3 as employment in the U.S. picked up more than forecast in April, boosting global stocks and oil.

Russia is benefiting from the overall risk-on feel” and “building on a rally which began last week,” Julian Rimmer, who trades Russian and Turkish stocks at CF Global Trading UK Ltd., said by e-mail.

Oil traded down 0.5 percent at $95.66 dollars per barrel in New York, snapping three days of gains. Russia’s crude and natural gas industries provide about 50 percent of the state’s budget revenue.

Russian equities have the cheapest valuations among 21 emerging markets tracked by Bloomberg. The Micex trades at 5.3 times 12-month estimated earnings and has lost 4.1 percent this year, compared with 11 times for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, which has dropped 0.6 percent in the period.

The number of shares traded on the Micex was 25 percent below its 10-day average, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

“Unfortunately, the volumes are not supporting the optimism so far,” Kirill Yankovskiy, head of equity sales at UralSib Financial Corp., said by phone from London.

To contact the reporter on this story: Vladimir Kuznetsov in Moscow at vkuznetsov2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Wojciech Moskwa at wmoskwa@bloomberg.net

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