‘To forecast the future of the Russian economy, one must make a guess at its progress toward becoming a nation under law’: the Wall Street Journal on investment risks in Russia. Apparently Russia’s manufacturing contraction worsened last month, spelling problems ahead for the country’s economy. United Rusal may widen its IPO by 225 million shares; according to Bloomberg, the IPO may value the company at 16% cheaper than its main Chinese rival. Ria-Novosti has a look back at its top ten economic stories of 2009 here. Apparently there is optimism in the air ahead of Russia-US talks on poultry imports, which Russia has blocked, sparking economic concerns among US poultry farmers. Does the oligarchy’s predilection for golf have a patriotic twinge to it? wonders the Telegraph. The French state has offered an apology to Russia’s richest man, Mikhail Prokhorov, for the 2007 accusations that he was involved in a pimping ring at a French chalet.