Russia’s Micex Index Climbs as Rebounding Crude Oil Lifts Market

Russian equities rebounded as rising crude oil prices boosted the outlook for the world’s largest energy exporter.

The Micex Index increased 0.3 percent to 1,540.36 by the close in Moscow after dropping as much as 0.4 percent. Of the 50 stocks in the gauge, 20 fell and 30 rallied. The dollar-denominated RTS Index added 0.1 percent to 1,614.09.

Crude increased 0.7 percent to $96.88 per barrel after falling 1.6 percent yesterday. Russia gets about half of its budget revenue from oil and natural gas. Oil producer OAO Bashneft surged 1.5 percent and OAO Surgutneftegas gained 1 percent. The 10-day volatility on the Micex fell to 10.833, the lowest since Dec. 28.

The oil price is “supportive,” Peter Szopo, head of research at Alfa Bank in Moscow, said by e-mail.

Russian stocks declined earlier on concern Europe’s debt crisis is deepening. Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy faces opposition calls to resign amid contested reports about illegal payments, while Deutsche Bank AG said this year’s rally in Italian, as well as Spanish, bonds may falter as Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi narrowed the front-runner’s lead before elections this month.

The Russian Depositary Index increased 0.2 percent, led by depositary receipts of Surgutneftegas rising 2.1 percent. AFK Sistema, Russian billionaire Vladimir Evtushenkov’s holding company, dropped 2.6 percent in London.

Consumer Gauge

Sberbank Investment Research created a new 24-stock index to showcase how Russia’s consumer companies have outperformed commodity producers, saying investors are overlooking the sector. The index will be priced daily, rebalanced quarterly, and traded by the bank’s global markets team, the Moscow-based bank said today in an e-mailed statement.

The number of shares traded on the Micex was 27 percent below the 30-day average, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Standard & Poor’s GSCI Index of commodities added 0.6 percent.

The Micex trades at about 5.7 times estimated earnings and has added 4.5 percent this year. That compares with a multiple of 10.9 times for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, which has gained 1.1 percent over the same period.

Russian equities have the lowest valuations based on estimated earnings among 21 emerging markets tracked by Bloomberg.

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