Moscow Stock Exchange: US sanctions hit Russian companies hard

The new punitive measures against oligarchs and corporations are affecting the Russian stock exchange. The aluminium manufacturer Rusal is particularly affected.

Moscow Stock Exchange: US sanctions hit Russian companies hard

The new US sanctions against Russia show effect: The shares of several Russian companies lost on Monday clearly, even ruble lost in afternoon on Moscow stock exchange three percent in value against dollar. Last, for a dollar, more than 60 rubles had to be paid and thus as much as since last November no longer. On Russian market, largest daily loss has been recorded for about four years, while equity index RTSI fell by 9.5 percent.

The sanctions were particularly hard for aluminium manufacturer Rusal, where billionaire Oleg Deripaska holds largest share. Deripaska is on sanction list. The share price of Rusal broke by around 30 percent when stock market opened. In meantime, he was about 47 percent in minus.

Previously, Rusal had indicated that US sanctions could have a negative impact on business. The group expects that group of companies will no longer be able to fulfil certain payment obligations. Rusal is one of largest aluminium producers in world. According to newspaper RBK, company calculates more than 60 percent of its business in dollars. Rusal is refore trying to settle its business in or currencies in future.

The Russian government has already announced that it wants to protect affected companies from consequences of new US sanctions. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev instructed his cabinet to prepare concrete measures. Government spokesman Dmitri Peskow said that damage to Russian corporations must be limited. However, we need time to analyse possible consequences of penalties.

On Friday, US had blacklisted many Russian businessmen and companies, who were said to have close ties with Kremlin. Among m is Gazprom chief Alexei Miller and billionaire and alleged son-in-law of Putin, Kirill Schamalow. The Washington government justified step with "growing pattern of malignant activities in world".

Russia announces "Hard answer"

Russian observers regard new US measures as unprecedented because y also concern billionaires that are not directly associated with conflict in Ukraine or alleged Russian interference in US elections. Large companies with numerous subsidiaries and employees are also affected.

The Russian Foreign Ministry had already condemned punitive measures on Friday as an "anti-Russian attack" and announced a "hard answer". With measures against Russian companies, US government is trying to "eliminate competitors on world market".

Updated Date: 10 April 2018, 12:02

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