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Mobile TeleSystems Touches Six-Week Low as Profit Declines 25%

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Nov. 21 (Bloomberg) -- OAO Mobile TeleSystems, Russia’s largest mobile-phone operator, reached the lowest level in six weeks in New York after reporting third-quarter earnings fell on increased market competition.

American depositary receipts of Moscow-based MTS fell 0.3 percent to $13.91 at the close of trading in New York after declining as much as 4.9 percent to $13.27, the lowest intraday level since Oct. 7. The company said today net income in the three months to Sept. 30 slid 25 percent to $362 million.

If competition stabilizes, the entire market will benefit, Alexey Kornya, MTS’ chief financial officer, said in a statement issued by PR Newswire.

“The main concern is tough market competition,” Anna Lepetukhina, an analyst at Troika Dialog, which has a “buy” recommendation on MTS shares, said in a phone interview today from Moscow. “Due to the competitive market landscape among Russian mobile service providers, over several quarters we’ve been seeing deteriorating financial results among mobile service operators.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Ksenia Galouchko in New York at kgalouchko1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos in New York at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net