Another day of calm trading, both globally and in Russia, with the main benchmarks ending moderately in the black, backed by the 1% rise in crude prices. Trading volumes remained at average levels, scoring USD 3.2bn. Again, most sectors ended the day with less than a 1% average change, with Energy stories (+1%) performing better, in particular compared with YTD leaders Steels (-1% on average) which maintained their slightly corrective stance. Among single names, Rosneft (-1.6%, 1.7x) and Severstal (+0.1%, 0.6x) again demonstrated the most divergent dynamics within their sectors, while Sberbank (+0.6%, 0.8x), whose business started the year on a strong note (see story on January RAS numbers below) managed to narrow the YTD performance lag with VTB (-1.0%, 0.8x) to 4pp. Elsewhere, we note the underperformance of MRSK Holding (-1.4%, 1.0x) which failed to puncture technical resistance at the 200d MA level (stands at RUB 3.05). This watermark had not been captured at the two previous attempts either: in September and in November 2011 (on MSCI inclusion). In addition, the company announced yesterday an open subscription for its shares (at RUB 3.08) in the size of USD 250mn (17x ADTV) which will absorb part of the potential demand for the stock.
This morning, Asian equities are trading higher with the Nikkei building up 0.7%; front S&P is flat, EURUSD advanced to 1.324; front Brent slid slightly below the USD 116/bbl mark (USc 50 lower than at our market close yesterday).