Ratings

Fitch confirms rating of NLMK at the level “BBB-” with negative forecast

On May 13th, Fitch Ratings has affirmed the long term issuer default rating (IDR) of NLMK at the level of "BBB-". The rating forecast is “negative", the agency reports.
The ratings reflect strong vertical integration of NLMK, low production costs, a good range of products, geographic diversification and the quality of the corporate management at the level above the average for Russia. "Negative" forecast reflects the continued high leverage of the company, which doesn’t meet the Fitch’s guidelines of the current ratings levels.
At the end of 2013, the total debt rose to $5.1 billion from $4.9 billion at the end of 2012. Cash and cash equivalents increased to $1.5 billion at the end of 2013 from $1.1 billion at the end of 2012 . In 2013, the adjusted gross leverage on cash from operations (FFO) grew to 4.11x (3.03x in 2012). However, Fitch expects that the adjusted gross leverage on FFO will decrease to 2.68x by the end of 2014 by generating positive free cash flow due to more conservative investment program (as compared with previous years).

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Standard & Poor’s reduces ratings for 5 Russian public monopolies

Credit rating agency Standard&Poor’s reduced long-term credit ratings of five Russian companies, such as OJSC “RZhD”, “Gazprom”, “Rosneft”, “Transneft” and FGC UES from “BBB” to “BBB-“. It is said in the press-release of the agency, Interfax-Ukraine reports.
The review has also affected the ratings of “Federal Passenger Company”, subsidiary of RZhD. The outlook is negative for all ratings.

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Fitch increases rating of KazTransGas and its subsidiaries to “BBB-”, forecast is “stable”

International rating agency Fitch Ratings has increased long-term issuer default ratings of KazTransGas (KTG) and its 100% subsidiaries Intergaz Central Asia (ICA) and KazTransGas Aimak (KTG Aimak) from “BB+” to “BBB-”, the ratings forecast is “stable”, the agency reported.
The growth of the companies’ ratings shows revaluation of the group’s relations with state parent structure KazMunaiGas (KMG) by Fitch.

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Fitch confirms the rating of SOCAR at ‘BBB – ’with stable forecast

Fitch confirms the long-term rating of SOCAR at ‘BBB – ’with stable forecast. The short-term issuer default rating is at F3, and the chief unsecured rating is at ‘BBB –– ’. The company’s ratings are brought to correspondence with the sovereign rating of Azerbaijan of BBB –/ Stable because the company acts in favor of the state in the strategy important oil and gas industries. SOCAR maintains tough communication with the Government and the state oil fund of Azerbaijan for admission of financial and investment decisions.

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According to Moody’s, sale of Kazakh assets to have a positive impact on Lukoil’s rating

Lukoil’s deal on sale of a part of its oil assets in Kazakhstan will have a positive impact on credit rating of the oil company, international rating agency Moody’s reports.
Analysts of Moody’s think that sale of the assets will allow Lukoil to focus on more promising projects in Kazakhstan and rating will take this into account.

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Moody’s: credit ratings of Bashneft not to suffer from the acquisition of Burneftegaz

The rating agency Moody's Investors Service has informed that the acquisition of 100% stake in Burneftegaz, which carries out exploration and production of oil in the Tyumen region, by Bashneft is neutral for the company’s credit ratings.
Although this transaction, financed by borrowings, will have a temporary negative impact on the financial performances of the company, they will continue to meet the criteria of Moody 's for this rating category. Moody 's notes that the deal will be favorable in terms of the Bashneft’s production and geographic diversification in the long term perspective.

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Russia Markets Outlook: It’s not only about Crimea

Russia Markets Outlook: It’s not only about Crimea
 “The pattern of the prodigal is: rebellion, ruin, repentance, reconciliation, restoration”
 Edwin Cole
 Best chance for a rally is in the 2nd half. In this note we look at the reasons why equities, debt and the ruble have under-performed peer groups through the 1st quarter. It was certainly not all about Crimea or the continuing Ukraine risk. The weaker ruble caused more damage in January and February. We also list the factors which may contribute to a recovery in the relative performance through the 2nd half of the year. A 2nd quarter rally is most unlikely as political and economic risks will remain high. 
 Top Russian stock picks. The table showing our Russian Top Stock Picks is later in this note. There are no changes this month. Over the medium term the best themes are likely to be the dividend payers and stocks where either the company or core shareholders are buying additional equity. Risks will remain high through the 2nd quarter but for investors willing to ignore the political noise and make the assumption that there will be no military intrusion into Ukraine and no additional sanctions, this is a good entry point for what remains one of the best long term growth stories within emerging markets. 

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KMG EP to submit a final report on oil stocks for 2013 soon.

In 2013 JSC ""KazMunaiGas" Exploration and Production" oil reserves did not change significantly, Abat Nurseitov, the Chairman of the Company, stated at a press conference in Astana on Wednesday.
According to him, in the near future the final report on oil by the end of 2013 will be formed.
"In the coming months we will publish (the report. - auth.) We can not say that immediately because we a public company. But I can tell you that the figures will not change significantly", - he stated.

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Oil and Gas, Metals and Mining, News from Russia and neighbouring countries
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