YUKOS HAVOC SENDS RUSSIAN STOCK PLUMMETING

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MOSCOW, May 27 (RIA Novosti) - This was a black day for the Yukos, Russia's biggest petroleum company. It came 12 per cent down in the Russian Trading System, as against closing time yesterday, and 7.5 per cent at the Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange.

The Yukos controversy dampened the entire Russian stock. This morning and early afternoon were fairly calm, 1-2% up and down against closing time yesterday. Experts ascribed the still to the oil mammoth's vague prospects.

As the day went on, things grew really black for the Yukos. It is likely to run bankrupt even within the year, the company said in this evening's official statement-to send the stock 4% down at once, and lower next.

Other liquid stock had it hard, too, though the market had long been ready to see the Yukos sinking.

"That was the principal market event of the day," says Sergei Zakharov, Zerich Capital Management staff analyst.

The mammoth's plight again determined market proceedings. Not only Yukos stock but the other blue chips were going off for a song. Even yesterday, the rates took a long-expected court verdict into account. Now, a close prospects to see the Yukos broke has sent holders into a panic, says Alexei Logvin, Interfintrade expert.

The stock plummeted in the Russian market toward the day's end as overseas holders offered a more emotional response to the drama than residents, what with many expats among Yukos small holders, says Alexander Razuvayev, Megatrustoil head analyst.

The RTS index had come 2.61% down to 613.52 by 6 p.m., Moscow time, the day bringing 191 transactions to a lump US$24.655 million. The Yukos was in the worst position of all, 11.58% down by closing time. The Rostelecom and the Tatneft are alone afloat-1.2% and 1.13% up, respectively, by closing time yesterday.

The United Russian Power Grid led the show, with deals to $9.42 million, as one of the scanty stability islets for the near future. Next came Rostelecom, $4.193 mn, LUKoil, 3.719 mn, and Yukos, 3.063 mn.

Anatoli Chubais, Grid Co. boss, is determined to put an end to power industrial cross-subsidies, and called the Cabinet at its recent session to draft a relevant bill. Such subsidies will vanish within the next four years, reassured Hermann Gref, Minister of Economic Development and Trade. All that made the Grid stock a tasty morsel, says Olga Belenkaya, Olma analyst.

The LUKoil, another and far luckier oil mammoth, will have its government block sold in one lot. The news makes its stock hopeful as offers will not bloat to send rates down, points out Maxim Shein, chief of the BrokerCreditService analytical pool.

The market remains consolidated, if we leave the Yukos aside. Holders don't think other companies will share its doom, he remarked to Novosti.

Alexei Logvin also does not think the Taxation Ministry will make similar claims to other market pillars. The Gasprom and the LUKoil are the safest in that respect. The expert ascribes big deals in their stock to a money outflow from others.

As for the Renaissance Capital, its analysts are even optimistic about the Yukos. Sure that the ill-starred company will come up again in a mere twelve months, they are calling hazardous bears to buy up its stock.

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