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Apart from the low rate of return (belowthe one offered by currency government debt or Eurobonds) and shortermaturities, the currency deposits market had at least one other unfavorablefeature, viz., the high level of concentration at this segment of the market.The two leaders, Surgutneftegasbank and MMB – at the start of 2001 accountedfor about 60% of the capital raised by the banks. By the fourth quarter, thesituation did not change much: the same two banks continued to hold almost 60%of the raised capital, whereas the top five banks (the two together with Trustand Investment Bank, Gazprombank and Sberbank) had virtually ¾ of the hard currency deposits.

4.6. Russian real estatemarket: the year
ofsustainable growth41

The analysis of the Russian real estatemarket in the aftermath of the August 1998 crisis, which was performed a yearago42, made it possible to draw the conclusion that by the end of theyear 2000, the real estate market had passed the phase of depressive stabilization and enteredthe phase of sustainable growth.

The preliminary results of the samplemonitoring of the residential property market in 10 cities were summarized inDecember 2001.

The obtained data showed that, as at theend of last year, the average specific bid price for apartments (in the USDollar equivalent) had been rising through 2001 in all the sampled cities(Table 18).

Table 17

Changes in the average bid price forresidential property in 1997-2001 (in the US Dollar equivalent)

Cities

Average specific price of apartments,$/sq.m

Index

December 1997

December 1998

December 1999

December 2000

December 2001

1998/1997

1999/1998

2000/1999

2001/2000

2001/1997

Moscow

950

890

656

670/720*

890/940*

0.94

0.74

1.02/1.10*

1.33/1.31*

0.94**

St.-Petersburg

560

565

370

370

490

1.01

0.65

1.00

1.32

0.88

Ekaterinburg

535

335

220

336

484

0.63

0.66

1.53

1.44

0.90

Kaliningrad

620

470

330

323

360

0.76

0.70

0.98

1.11

0.58

N.Novgorod

538

450

265

280

301

0.84

0.59

1.06

1.08

0.56

Tver

355

265

186

203

260

0.75

0.70

1.09

1.28

0.73

Novosibirsk

490

280

210

263

435

0.57

0.75

1.25

1.65

0.89

Perm

505

180

182

287

390

0.36

1.01

1.58

1.36

0.77

Omsk

375

170

130

152

275

0.45

0.76

1.17

1.81

0.73

Ulyanovsk

340

135

134

158

230

0.40

0.99

1.18

1.46

0.68

Notes:

* - Data regarding Moscow: in thenumerator the calculations were performed according to the methodology of1993-1999, in the denominator the calculations were performed according to thenew methodology;

** - To ensure the comparability of data,the index of average bid price for residential property in Moscow in 2001 ascompared to 1997 was computed basing on the price of 2001 obtained through theold methodology.

The record price increase was registeredin Omsk (1.81 times), and the lowest growth was recorded in Nizhny Novgorod(8%). The prices in St.-Petersburg had risen only slightly (by 11%). In Moscowthe index exceeded 30%. The prices started to grow almost in all of the samplecities in 2000, but their dynamics were not synchronized: at the beginning of2000, the residential property prices began to mount in Ekaterinburg and Perm,in the middle of same year - in Novosibirsk, Ulyanovsk, Omsk, Moscow and Tver,by the year end –in St.-Petersburg and Kaliningrad, and only in the middle of 2001– in NizhnyNovgorod.

However, in most of the cities, theresidential property prices at the end of 2001 were by 10-40% lower than in thepre-crisis December of 1997. Moscow, Ekaterinburg, Novosibirsk andSt.-Petersburg most closely reached the pre-crisis price level, whileKaliningrad and Nizhny Novgorod stood farthest.

The growth rates of real estate prices inRussian cities are linked to the rate of their reduction during and after thecrisis: the closer (as compared to the pre-crisis level) the prices got to thelowest point, the sooner they began to grow and the faster are the growth rates(Table 18).

Table 18

Typical points of price dynamics inRussian cities between December 1997 and December 2001

City

12.97

$/sq.m (=1)

Lowest point

Price level as at 12.2000

Index by 12.1997

Index reduction against the 12.1997level

Index by 12.1997

Index increase from the lowestpoint

Moscow

950

0.65

0.35

0.71*

0.06

Ekaterinburg

535

0.40

0.60

0.63

0.23

Novosibirsk

490

0.41

0.59

0.54

0.13

St.-Petersburg

560

0.62

0.38

0.66

0.04

Perm

505

0.33

0.67

0.57

0.22

Tver

355

0.48

0.52

0.57

0.09

Omsk

375

0.32

0.68

0.41

0.09

Ulyanovsk

340

0.37

0.63

0.46

0.09

Kaliningrad

620

0.47

0.53

0.52

0.05

Moscow

950

0.79*

0.14

0.94*

0.29

Ekaterinburg

535

0.78

0.38

0.90

0.50

Novosibirsk

490

0.70

0.29

0.89

0.48

St.-Petersburg

560

0.71

0.09

0.88

0.26

Perm

505

0.69

0.36

0.77

0.44

Tver

355

0.62

0.14

0.73

0.25

Omsk

375

0.48

0.16

0.73

0.41

Ulyanovsk

340

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