Deripaska’s New Deal and the “Visible” Hand

Oleg Deripaska is calling for the Russian government to undertake an FDR-like new deal, which naturally will involve an increased presence in the economy.  Shareholders of Rusal may wince to hear the following words:

“The hand of the state should become visible and solid,” Deripaska added. “It is the government’s responsibility to find the right balance between supply and demand, to find a price balance. This requires manual control.”

Deripaska said government infrastructure projects could not only create new jobs but also encourage consumer demand.

This new deal already seems to be underway, as Rusal has nominated Kremlin powerbroker Alexander Voloshin to the board of Norilsk Nickel, along with the late-added entry of Deripaska’s rival Mikhail Prokhorov.  As the headline of a recent FT piece ventured, this crisis is truly becoming the “humbling of Russia’s masters of the universe.”