Russia is home to the world’s coldest jobs

bne IntelliNews February 17, 2019

Some Russian employees are expected to go to work in temperatures further below freezing than in any other part of the world, according to a study by Crystal Ski Holidays.

MOSCOW BLOG: Is the arrest of US fund manager Michael Calvey a litmus test for Russia?

Ben Aris in Berlin February 16, 2019

How much damage will the February 14 arrest of US fund manager Michael Calvey on “large-scale embezzlement” charges do to Russia's investment case?

COMMENT: Poland hosts fractious US-Israeli anti-Iran summit

Maxim Mikheev research associate at the Dialogue of Civilisations in Berlin February 16, 2019

On February 13-14, the “Ministerial to Promote a Future of Peace and Security in the Middle East” conference was held in Warsaw at the initiative of Poland and the United States, and gathered representatives from 62 countries.

Mike Calvey, founder of top Russian private equity fund Barings Vostok and Russia’s most famous fund manager, arrested on fraud charges

Ben Aris in Berlin February 15, 2019

Local reports say detention relates to theft of 2.5bn rubles. His unsettling arrest a hard blow to fragile investment scene. Russian sovereign wealth fund chief says he would vouch for him.

Russia’s Gazprom mulling a second Turk Stream pipeline

Ben Aris in Belrin February 15, 2019

Gazprom might construct a Turk Stream 2 gas pipeline if there is sufficient demand and the company receives all the necessary approvals, says Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller.

Food delivery service Golama raises $2.3mn, sees orders grow by “up to 30%” monthly

bne IntelliNews February 15, 2019

Moscow-based grocery delivery service Golama has attracted 150mn ruble (approximately $2.3mn) in equity funding from an unnamed individual investor, according to media reports, reports East-West Digital News (EWDN).

MOSCOW BLOG: US threatens new round of sanctions but Russia is ready

Ben Aris in Berlin February 14, 2019

Sanctions are back. There were four rounds of sanctions in 2018 that clearly did a lot of damage to Russia’s business and investment case, but ultimately they failed to produce their advertised goal: force the Kremlin to change its aggressive ways.

Apple provides details on compliance with Russian data-localization law

bne IntelliNews February 14, 2019

While Facebook and Twitter are being exposed to administrative charges for non-compliance with Russia’s data localization law, Apple Inc. detailed the user data it is storing in Russia

Russia’s Gazprom Media and US investor back catering startup from Moscow

EWDN in Mosocw February 14, 2019

The media arm of Russia’s gas giant, Gazprom-Media, Russia’s largest Russian media holding, has led a $2mn funding round for Catery

Russians spent $1.66bn on games in 2018

bne IntelliNews February 14, 2019

Russians spent some $1.66bn on games in 2018, according to Newzoo. Ranking 11th in the research firm’s global ranking, Russia is ahead of Brazil and Mexico ($1.45bn and $1.58bn, respectively), but behind Italy and Spain ($2.17bn and $2.20bn).

Google agrees to filter censored content in Russia

EWDN in Moscow February 14, 2019

The business daily reports that Google has even reached an agreement with Roskomnadzor to receive an updated list of banned websites daily before deleting some of its links to those sites following additional research.

Sentiment on emerging markets and Russia turning as EM funds have second biggest inflows ever

Ben Aris in Berlin February 13, 2019

After a terrible year in 2018 sentiment towards emerging markets, and Russia in particular, seems to be turning more positive after EM bonds funds had their second best week on record in terms of inflows, and equities also attracted new money.

COMMENT: Russia’s manufacturing slump should be temporary

Capital Economics in London February 13, 2019

We suspect that the sharp slowdown in Russia’s manufacturing sector in the second half of 2018 was due to a fall in public spending on military and railway transport. If we’re right, manufacturing should recover in 2019

Russian government goes full circle on allowing kiosks to sell goods

Ben Aris in Berlin February 12, 2019

Russia’s Deputy Minister of Production and Trade Victor Evtukhov made upbeat comments on the rollout of smaller retail formats as part of the government drive to encourage the growth of SMEs.

COMMENT: Russia’s strong current account supports our ST positive view on RUB

at ING in Moscow February 12, 2019

Russia's current account surplus of $11.8bn for January is in line with our expectations. This, combined with a benign external environment, reinforces our constructive short-term view on RUB. But there may be some weakness in 2Q19

Inflation in Russia on course to end 2019 at 4.7%, says Sberbank

bne IntelliNews February 12, 2019

Russia’s inflation ended 2018 above the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) target of 4% as prices surged at the very end of the year. Inflation ended 2018 at 4.3%, jumping from 3.4% in November. However, inflation should end 2019 at 4.7%

Poland concedes setback in quest to stop Nord Stream 2

bne IntelliNews February 12, 2019

Warsaw's hopes of stopping the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline were dashed, as Germany and France pushed through a compromise wording of amendments to EU’s gas market rules that will result in the weakening of the bloc’s joint control.

Rosneft CEO advises Putin to pull Russia out of the OPEC+ production cuts deal

Ben Aris in Berlin February 10, 2019

Igor Sechin says the deal is a strategic threat and plays into the hands of the US.

Moody's raises Russia’s rating to investment grade

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2019

Russia has now returned to a hat trick of investment grades from the leading ratings agencies.

Russian central bank keeps monetary policy rate on hold at 7.75%, outlook for modest rises in inflation in 2019

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2019

Analysts are divided over where inflation will go in 2019 and hence if the Central Bank of Russia will return to its monetary easing or tighten again.