Russian stocks gained for a second day as consumer shares rose and the ruble extended its advance.
The Micex Index (INDEXCF) added 0.5 percent to 1,462.92 by 1:46 p.m. in Moscow, paring this year’s loss to 2.7 percent. OAO M.video, Russia’s biggest electronics retailer, rose 2.4 percent to 237.46 rubles, reducing its 2014 decline to 21 percent. OAO Aeroflot, the nation’s largest airline, increased 2 percent to 77.75 rubles.
The European Central Bank and Bank of England meet on monetary policy today, while investors await data on U.S. jobless claims before payroll and unemployment reports tomorrow. The ruble gained against the dollar, adding 0.5 percent to 34.72, after slumping to its lowest level in almost five years on Feb. 3. HSBC Holdings Plc said M.video’s drop is overdone and raised the stock to the equivalent of buy from hold, according to an e-mailed note.
“The stock market had seen a decent correction, it’s recovering and the ruble is looking better now,” Vladimir Bragin, head of research at Alfa Capital in Moscow, where he helps manage $2.9 billion, said by phone. “The sectors that were oversold, like the consumer shares, are rebounding today. Investors are looking out for economic news out of Europe and the U.S. as Russia is very sensitive to external factors.”
While Moody’s Investors Service said yesterday the Winter Olympics in Sochi are unlikely to spur faster growth in Russia, the games will generate higher profits for Aeroflot, the country’s biggest airline, and Yandex NV, the largest online search engine service, according to Otkritie Financial Corp.
Aeroflot increased the number of regular Moscow-to-Sochi daily flights to 15 from five, according to data from its website. The Sochi opening ceremony takes place tomorrow.
OAO Mobile TeleSystems, the nation’s biggest wireless carrier, gained 1.6 percent to 301 rubles, the fourth day of increases. Chief Executive Officer Andrei Dubovskov said Feb. 4 the company plans to increase dividends in 2014 and 2015 as demand for wireless data boosts earnings.
Russian stocks fell amid a rout in developing-nation securities. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index has lost 7.9 percent this year, dropping 1.4 percent this week. The ruble has slumped 5.4 percent against the dollar this year, the fifth-worst performer among 24 emerging-market currencies tracked by Bloomberg.
The dollar-denominated RTS Index (RTSI$) added 0.8 percent to 1,327.47, after rising the most in two months yesterday. Russian equities have the cheapest valuations among 21 developing-nation economies monitored by Bloomberg. Shares on the Micex trade at 3.2 times projected 12-month earnings, compared with a multiple of 9 for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index.
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