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Key events are non-CIS imports and car sales for March


This week includes the March statistics on non-CIS imports (customs, likely at the beginning of this week), the sales of new passenger cars (AEB, 8–9 April) and the federal budget balance (from MinFin, 10–11 April). The CBR is due to publish the external trade balance for February (9–11 March), while Rosstat is to release its regular weekly report on the CPI on Wednesday and its consumer confidence index for 1Q13.

March statistics on non-CIS imports. Following the customs statistics on Russia’s export and import volumes in February that were published last Friday, customs is to release a detailed report on non-CIS imports in March. This will likely show internal demand cooling further after the sharp jump at the beginning of 2013.

March car sales. MoM SA growth is likely to return to close to zero after the 4.1% spike in January. This implies a 1% YoY decline, flagging that activity in the sector remains subdued. The expected decline coincides with the unfavourable calendar factor: this March there were only 20 working days, one less than in 2012.

March’s federal budget balance. According to the preliminary estimates from MinFin, receipts reached RUB 1.1tn in March (up from RUB 0.9tn in the previous month), while expenditures declined to RUB 1.0tn (from RUB 1.1tn in February), bringing the monthly federal budget balance into the black.

External trade balance for February. The YoY contraction in exports (owing to a YoY drop in Urals prices and weak gas exports due to the warm weather in Europe) in combination with rather strong growth in imports (2% YoY, according to the preliminary customs reading) might result in a lower trade balance surplus and a greater decline in annual terms.

Rosstat’s consumer confidence index for 1Q13. The business expectation subindex of PMI Services indicated a slowdown during the first three months of this year.

Maxim Oreshkin, Daria Isakova
VTB Capital analyst

CBR, Rosstat, ruble, Europe, PMI

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