26 Feb 2010 19:23

Oil helps Russian stocks top 1320 points on MICEX

MOSCOW. Feb 26 (Interfax) - Russia's stock market pushed past the 1320-point mark on the MICEX index amid rising oil and strong U.S. GDP figures for Q4 2009.

The MICEX ended the day up 1.32% at 1323.72 points, the RTS 1.25% at 1390.25, and the main benchmark stocks gained 0.2%-2.5%. RTS futures indicated basic market optimism.

Gazprom gained 0.8% on the MICEX for the day, VTB was up 0.7%, Lukoil 2% (and 2.5% on the RTS), Norilsk Nickel 2%, Rostelecom 0.2%, Rosneft 1.7%, Gazprom Neft 1.8%, Surgutneftegas 2.1% (common) and 4.7% (prefs), Tatneft 1.6% (common) and 5.5% (prefs), Sberbank of Russia 0.4%, and Polyus Gold 0.2%.

There was a good bit of positive news for Europe: consumer confidence in Britain rose for a second month, and the country's GDP forecasts were revised up. Euro zone consumer price inflation conformed to expectations, and while U.S. consumer confidence and secondary-market home sales did not measure up to expectations, GDP growth was greater than it had been for six years. But U.S. unemployment applications spiked, confounding expectations, and Greece's debt woes remained a concern.

On the MICEX second tier of stocks, OGK-2 gained 7.6%, Sollers rose 7.1%, Mosenergo 4.8%, Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works 4.6%.

TGK-9 dropped 2.4%, NOVATEK lost 1.8%, and Razgulyai closed down 0.8%.

Combined trading on the RTS Classic came to $8.353 million, on the RTS Standard to $364.455 million, and trading on the MICEX topped 43.393 billion rubles.