Today in Russian Business – May 22, 2012

Russia’s unemployment rates, at 5.8% for April, are at their lowest since 2008.  Foreign investors have welcomed news of Vladimir Putin’s new cabinet as evidence of economic stability, but noted Vladimir Putin’s dominance. ‘We never expected a particularly reformist government, and nor do we have one.’  Bidzina Ivanishvili’s sale of his four development properties leaves the Gutseriyev-Shishkhanov family in a position to take hold of Moscow’s luxury hotel market.  Retail group Auchan is establishing a joint bank with Dutch Credit Europe Group to ‘strengthen their position in the market’.  Russian-Israeli commercial property developer AFI Development has reported first quarter net profit losses of $10 million, year-on-year.