MOSCOW, Oct 18 (Reuters) – A Russian government plan to
slash compulsory retirement savings threatens to cripple the
nascent asset management industry without fixing a hole in the
state pensions budget, industry players and economic experts
Progress on pension reform is being closely watched, as
Russia grapples with a huge shortfall in its overburdened state
pension system. Subsidies to this system already swallow up a
quarter of the federal budget – and they will keep rising as the
number of pensioners keeps growing.
MOSCOW, Oct 17 (Reuters) – Russia’s economy is struggling to
maintain its recent growth momentum, economic statistics showed
on Wednesday, increasing the likelihood that the central bank
will hold off on a further hike in interest rates next month
despite fears about rising inflation.
Data released by the State Statistics Service showed that
retail sales rose by 4.4 percent in September compared with a
year earlier, a marginal increase on 4.3 percent growth
registered in August.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – The easy days are over for Russia. After years of rising oil prices that poured ever more revenues into the nation’s coffers, it now faces tough decisions on spending.
A draconian budget plan, due to go before parliament on Friday, symbolizes the new era of austerity. And it raises big questions about how exactly Russia will make its books balance in the years ahead.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Quarterly earnings at VTB (VTBR.MM: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Russia’s second-biggest bank, dropped 63 percent due to volatile financial markets and foreign exchange losses, underscoring the importance of its plan to issue new shares to bolster capital.
The state-controlled bank’s capital base has been strained by acquisitions and lending growth, and chief executive Andrei Kostin said on Wednesday it was considering a $2 billion share sale next spring after the successful sale of a $5 billion stake in larger rival Sberbank (SBER.MM: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) this week.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – The pitch from the pyramid scheme sweeping Russia has undeniable appeal: make money and make the world a better place, it says. Like thousands of others, Roman Vorobyev believed the scheme would deliver big returns for him and cascading wealth for others.
So in April Vorobyev ploughed 400,000 roubles ($12,500) of savings into a self-styled ‘mutual aid fund,’ known as MMM-2011, promoted by Sergei Mavrodi, a guru-like financier, former lawmaker and convicted fraudster.
MOSCOW, Sept 13 (Reuters) – Russia’s central bank raised all
of its key interest rates by a quarter point on Thursday, in a
surprise move that reflected its concern about inflation after
consumer price growth overshot its 6 percent target.
The move bucks the trend in other major economies where weak
growth is putting pressure on central banks to keep rates low,
or else cut them – as the fellow BRIC countries Brazil, India
and China have all done recently.
MOSCOW, Sep 10 (Reuters) – A prominent Russian
anti-corruption campaigner and opposition leader on Monday
accused Kremlin-controlled banking giant VTB of a
“pattern of mismanagement and questionable practices”, a charge
the bank strongly denied.
The allegations were contained in a report co-published by
Alexei Navalny’s Foundation for Fighting Corruption and the
Henry Jackson Society, a British-based think-tank.
MOSCOW, July 6 (Reuters) – Russia will keep a tight grip on
budget spending to reduce an excessive reliance on oil and gas
revenues, according to a draft three-year budget plan reviewed
by the new government on Friday.
The fiscal strategy cuts projections for both revenues and
spending, rowing back on fast spending growth that has helped
Russia to resist global economic weakness and smoothed President
Vladimir Putin’s return to the Kremlin.
MOSCOW, July 4 (Reuters) – Food prices helped drive Russian
inflation sharply higher in June, data showed on Wednesday,
marking an end to months of record low price increases and
buttressing the central bank’s case for keeping interest rates
Despite tumbling inflation during the first five months of
2012, the central bank has resisted cuts in interest rates,
arguing that record low inflation was largely the result of
temporary factors – an argument underscored by the
faster-than-expected acceleration last month.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Falling oil prices could trigger a prolonged slump in Russia that would lay bare the growing fiscal risks, threatening President Vladimir Putin’s election promise to increase wages and fanning public discontent.
The world’s largest oil producer is well-placed in the short run to withstand sliding prices, thanks to sizeable cash reserves and a flexible rouble. An d P u tin, who returned to the Kremlin after March’s election, is still widely popular.