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Gazprom Heads for Best 2-Day Gain Since 2010 on Dividend Report

OAO Gazprom is poised for its best two-day performance in 17 months in Moscow trading after Vedomosti reported that Russia’s gas export monopoly may double its dividend.

Gazprom gained 4.6 percent to 185.56 rubles on Moscow’s Micex market at 3:01 p.m. local time, adding to yesterday’s 5.5 percent rise. That would be the steepest two-day advance since May 2010. Before yesterday, the shares were down 13 percent this year.

The gas exporter is considering a proposal to set aside 180 billion rubles ($5.96 billion) for the 2011 dividend, doubling last year’s record, Vedomosti newspaper reported yesterday, citing unidentified company officials.

“The stock was significantly undervalued, and now we are seeing some improving sentiment related to the potential of higher dividends,” Pavel Sorokin, an oil and gas analyst at Alfa Bank in Moscow, said by telephone.

The increased payout would imply a dividend yield of more than 4 percent, he said. That would surpass Exxon Mobil Corp.’s 2.3 percent yield and the 3 percent for Chevron Corp., according to Bloomberg data.

“The market has long been living under the paradigm that everything is so bad with Gazprom that nothing could be worse,” said Dmitry Loukashov, an oil and gas analyst at VTB Capital in Moscow. “Finally we get real news, which is positive and significantly positive.”

Gazprom declined to comment on the report.

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