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It is worth noting, that if in the near future the dollar starts strengthening against EURO, whereas prices for the energy sources remains at the lowest levels, the Bank of Russia will be forced to continue the policy of ruble devaluation against two-currency basket. However, in this case it will be important that this situation would not stay for a long time, because otherwise it will be difficult for the Central Bank to maintain exchange rate expectations.

To maintain the domestic enterprises in the aggravating financial crisis, on December 19 the RF CB has confirmed the decision to provide unsecured credits for the term of one year, rather than for six months (before the maximum term for the unsecured credits was six months). At the same time, there is no confidence that the major share of allocated funds will be addressed at the real sector of economy. In other words, the measures taken so far are supporting only the banking, rather than the real economic sector.

Financial MarketsN. Burkova, E. Khudko In September the Russian financial market dynamics was determined by the negative situation in the global financial and commodity market. The growing global liquidity crisis, the continued decline in oil prices, as well as the policy pursued by the Bank of Russia of the ruble devaluation and raising key interest rates contributed to the deterioration of the Russian stock market. Moreover, on December 15, Standard & Poor's Agency has downgraded the forecast for the Russian sovereign rating form positive to stable. Moreover, on December 8, Standard & Poor's Agency has downgraded the forecast for Moscow long-term rating from stable to negative, as well as Russian credit ratings due to sharp downgrading of the international reserves and investment inflows. However, a number of anti-crisis measures taken by the Government of Russia, including support to the automotive industry, have contributed to some improvement in investors expectations. These volatile trends were clearly evident particularly in the Russian stock market (where the quotations of "blue chips" have been upgraded to 40 per cent), as well as in the investors grown activities in MICEX and RTS futures markets and at the same time, lower Government securities market In December, Russian Eurobonds demonstrated a volatile dynamics in the yields at the background of negative external news and aggravated global financial crisis on the one hand, and measures, taken by the RF government to support banking sector and stock market on the other hand. However, the In the course of preparation of the survey, there were used analytical materials and surveys published by the Zenith Bank, investment company ATON, MICEX, and the materials presented at web sites of Russian issuing companies.

policy of the Bank of Russia in terms of ruble weakening and upgrading the key refinancing rates has not decreased attractiveness of government bonds to investors and resulted in low liquidity of the market.

As of December 24, 2008, the Russian Eurobonds RUS-30 yield to maturity has decreased as compared with the level of November 23, 2008 from 11.94 to 9.89 per cent per annum (by 17.71 per cent), RUS-28 from 11.24 per cent to 10.99 per cent per annum (by 2.22 per cent), RUS-18 from 8.08 to 7.71 per cent per annum (by 5.63 per cent) and RUS-10 from 5.99 per cent to 1.63 per cent per annum. In December, there were no sales in the Ministry of Finance bonds (7-th tranche), except for December 9, when the yield to maturity was 4.65 per cent per annum, which is by 8.74 per cent higher than the earlier indicator (4.28 per cent per annum) a month before (on November 14) (See Fig. 12).

5,25% Tranche 4,50% 3,75% 3,00% 2,25% 1,50% 0,75% 0,00% Fig. 1. Minfin bonds' yields to maturity in October - December 13,50% 12,00% 10,50% 9,00% 7,50% 6,00% 4,50% 3,00% 1,50% RUS-2030 RUS-2010 RUS-2018 RUS-0,00% -1,50% -3,00% Fig. 2. Yields to maturity of the Russian Eurobonds with maturity in 2010, 2018, 2028 and 2030 in October - December Within the period from November 24 to December 24 the total turnover of GKO- OFZ secondary market amounted to approximately RUR 21.13 billion with an average daily turnover of RUR 0.billion. (about RUR 48.98 billion with an average daily turnover of RUR 2.58 billion in November), 01.10.06.10.09.10.16.10.21.10.24.10.30.10.06.11.13.11.04.12.09.12.12.12.17.12.22.12.01.10.06.10.09.10.14.10.17.10.22.10.27.10.30.10.05.11.10.11.13.11.18.11.21.11.26.11.01.12.04.12.09.12.12.12.17.12.22.12.what demonstrated a decline of average daily turnover in December as compared with preceding month by 2.8-fold.

Like in preceding month, there were no auctions on additional OFZ placements in the period from November 24 to December 24.

As of December 24, the GKO-OFZ market amounted to RUR 1144.02 bln at face value and to RUR 1024.32 bln at market value. The duration of the GKO-OFZ market portfolio was 1959.25 days, having decreased (by 62.97 days) as compared with preceding month (as of November 23).

Stock market Stock market situation In November, Russian Eurobonds demonstrated a volatile dynamics in the yields at the background of negative external news, on the one hand, and measures, taken by the government authorities, the RF government among them, to support national economies on the other hand. Further revocations of bank licenses due to the failure to perform their obligations, RUR downgrading against USD and Euro as a result of Central Bank devaluation policy, as well as upgrading the refinancing rate to 13 per cent per annum have provoked a downfall in quotations. Moreover, the situation in the Russian stock market has noticeably changed after December 8, when Standard & Poor's Agency has downgraded Russian credit ratings forecast and Moscow long-term rating from BBB+ to BBB with negative forecast due to the sharp reduction of the international reserves and investment inflow. On December 15, Moodys has downgraded the forecast for the Russian sovereign rating from positive to stable.

However, measures, taken by the Government of the Russian Federation to support the national financial market, as well as some optimistic corporate news had a positive impact on the investors' expectations. In particular, it is worth mentioning:

- Credit allocation by the RF CB to Credit Deposit Insurance Agency in the amount of RUR 65.billion for the banks recovery;

- Vnesheconombank approval to provide subordinated credits to the banks;

- MDM Bank merger with UPSA Bank;

- The decision to grant state guarantees by the Russian Government on credits in the amount of RUR 300 billion to the major Russian enterprises, as well as RUR 150 billion to support the labor market and the real sector of economy;

- Credits, provided by the RF public banks to commercial banks and enterprises of the real sector of economy;

- Measures to support the Russian automotive industry, in particular the allocation of about RUR 200 billion and subsidies of interest on credits for low-cost cars purchase.

All those volatile factors have urged the upgrading of a part of the most liquid securities in the Russian stock markets in December (up to 40 per cent), whereas a decrease in another part of securities quotations (up to 10 per cent), as well as a general trend in MICEX and RTS market stock indices growth over 15 per cent as compared with preceding month.

Throughout December a volatile dynamics was observed in the Russian stock market. Thus, throughout the month, a general trend to growth in MICEX index was replaced by short corrective periods. The minimum value of the MICEX index has reached 562.34 points on December 5 (which is by 8.78 per cent more than the relevant indicator of preceding period). The maximum value of the MICEX index for the month reached on December 23: 661.33 points (which is nearly by 15 per cent lower than the relevant indicator of previous period. Such MICEX index dynamics in December has reflected a general volatile trend in the quotations of the Russian companies' equities (Fig. 3).

140 2 100,The total volume of trading 130 (roubles, billion) 1 950,MICEX Index 120 1 800,110 1 650,100 1 500,90 1 350,80 1 200,70 1 050,60 900,50 750,40 600,30 450,20 300,10 150,0 0,Fig. 3. Dynamics of MICEX Index and trading volume In general, within the period from November 24 to December 24, 24, the MICEX index has increased nearly by 7 per cent, what makes about 40.34 points in absolute terms (within the year, from December 24, 2007 to December 24, 2008 the MICEX index has downgraded 3 times). Over the same period the turnover of trades in shares, included in the MICEX index, made about RUR 590.73 bln at an average daily turnover of RUR 25.68 bln. (against RUR 455.39 billion with an average daily turnover of RUR 23.97 billion in the preceding period). Therefore, the investors average daily activity in the stock market in December has increased as compared with the preceding month by 7 per cent. The indicators of maximum and minimum daily turnover in the market trading system in December made, accordingly, RUR 31.18 bln. (as of December 23), and RUR 17.90 bln. (on December 1).

As of monthly results (from November 24 through December 24), the blue chips have shown a volatile trend. The leaders of growing rates were Rostelecom, Tatneft and Gasprom Neft, shares, the value of which has increased by 42.03 per cent, 32.16 per cent and 17.58 per cent, accordingly. Some lower growth rates were observed about the shares of LUKOIL (by 12.88 per cent), Rosneft (by 11.89 per cent) Mosenergo (by 3.57 per cent), VTB Bank (by 1.50 per cent).

At the same time, Sberbank of Russia and GMK Nornickel have demonstrated a decline by 9.per cent 3.37 per cent accordingly, followed by Gazprom (1.23 per cent) and Surgutneftegas (0.71 per cent) (See Fig. 4).

points roubles, billion 01.10.18.10.07.11.26.11.13.12.10.01.29.01.15.02.06.03.26.03.14.04.04.05.22.05.09.06.30.06.17.07.05.08.22.08.10.09.29.09.16.10.05.11.24.11.11.12.45,00% 37,50% 30,00% 22,50% 15,00% 7,50% 0,00% -7,50% -15,00% Change in price (%) Fig. 4. Dynamics of the Russian Blue Chips from November 24 to December 24, In December the MICEX turnover leaders were: Gazprom(44.92 per cent of the total turnover), Sberbank of Russia (16.23 per cent), LUKOIL (9.85 per cent), Rosneft (6.79 per cent) and GMK Nornickel (4.58 per cent). Total share of transactions with the above five companies shares (blue chips) made about 82.37 per cent (all blue chips 88.26 per cent) of the gross turnover in the MICEX stock market in the period of November 24 to December 24.

According to MICEX information, as of December 24, the top five leaders of the domestic stock market in terms of capitalization, estimated on monthly average results, were: Gazprom RUR 2,359.07 bln, (RUR 2,737.61 bln in November), Rosneft 955.40 bln, (RUR 922.61 bln in preceding month), LUKOIL - RUR 706.42 bln, (RUR 755.34 bln in November), Surgutneftegas -562.54 bln, (RUR 485.87 bln in preceding month), and Sberbank of Russia - RUR 539.24 bln (against RUR 633.58 bln). Therefore, volatility was also noted in business capitalization in December.

Futures and Options Market The investors activity in the futures market in December has grown (nearly by 2.5 per cent) as compared with the preceding month. Herewith, the number of transactions has increased by 45 per cent. Thus, in the period of November 24 through December 26 the total turnover in the MICEX futures market made approximately RUR 78.65 bln. (3,187 transactions, 2.40 mln of contracts), against RUR 76.75 bln (2,192 transactions, 2.5 mln of contracts) in November. Herewith, the largest volume of trading in December as a month earlier, was observed in futures RUR/USD, amounting to RUR 73.11 billion (679 transactions, 2.35 million contracts); the turnover in trades with those futures has remained at the same level as in preceding month. The greatest number of transactions (2 498) within the month was made with commodity futures, the volume of trades reached RUR 4.5 billion rubles. The balance of trading volume, taken by RUR/Euro and MICEX index, made RUR 1.billion. There were no bids for interest rates in December.

A similar situation was noted at RTS FORTS futures market, where the investors activity in December has grown by 55 per cent as compared with the preceding month. Thus, in the period of November 24 through December 26 the total turnover in the RTS futures market made approximately RUR 471.90 bln. (4.322 transactions, 20.83 mln contracts), against about RUR 305.41 bln (3,transactions, 12.46 mln of contracts) in November. Like before, futures enjoyed the greatest demand:

the volume of trades in the period under review made RUR 438.98 billion (4,273.41 transactions, 19.05 mln of contracts). Options enjoyed far lower demand; the turnover amounted to about RUR 32.92 bln (48.22 thousand transactions, 1.78 mln of contracts), though the investors activity in the futures market in has increased nearly twice as compared with the preceding month.

LUKoil Tatneft Rosneft Gazprom Russia Bank VTB Mosenergo Rostelecom Sberbank of GMK NorNikel Gazprom neft Surgutneftegas The maximum daily turnover in the RTS futures market made RUR 23.93 billion in December (as of December 4), and minimum was RUR 6.96 bln. (on December 26). Herewith, volume of trades in futures of "Shares of electric power companies" aimed at maintaining the liquidity of shares of electricity companies after the suspension RAO UES trading at the stock markets on June 6, has significantly increased in December (over 87 times) in view of the forthcoming execution deadline (on December 15) and made RUR 45.23 mln. (166 transactions and 5 214 contracts) against approximately RUR 516/85 thousand (43 transactions and 80contracts) in November.

The last trading day of those futures was on December 12. On December 15, the futures contracts execution took place in the RTS FORTS futures market, among which the number of non-executed contracts with the "Shares of electric power companies" made 9,072 contracts, and the volume of execution was RUR 75.85 million.

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