Most Russian stocks have been climbing today. On MICEX, YUKOS advanced 2.6 percent, Surgutneftegas and LUKoil grew 2.49 and 1.8 percent respectively, and RAO UES edged up 1 percent. The RTS index stepped up 1.84 percent to 473.37 points as of 15:30 Moscow time. The trade volume amounted to $7.5m.
According to analysts, market growth was catalyzed by YUKOS announcements on the dividend payout policy and corporate governance principles of the oil company to-be YukosSibneft. YUKOS intention to pay quarterly and annual dividends at 40 percent of the company's US GAAP net profit brought about a strong demand for stocks of YUKOS and Sibneft, including on the part of western investors. Apart from the high dividends, investors were pleased with the confirmed eagerness of both companies to merge despite continuous pressure from authorities.
Some analysts believe, however, that the current growth in Russian stock prices has been of speculative nature amid a lack of significant news and the holiday season.