Today in Russian Business

Although he praised Russia’s economic development, Former US Federal Reserve chief Alan Greenspan said that the double-digit inflation rate was hurting Russia’s economy. UBS Securities is preparing to offer stocks of its investment funds to the Russian market. Russian banks believe the stocks will be used to diversify current portfolios, rather than to rival them. Russian metals giant Norilsk Nickel is considering buying back shares worth up to $5 billion in a bid to help a top shareholder avoid a merger with a rival firm. The country’s metals billionaires are moving into gold, “attracted by record prices and the prospect of carving a share of production that is forecast to rise 40% by 2015.” Russia’s Stabilization Fund currently stands at a mammoth $150 billion. Renault predicts that Russia will surpass Germany to become Europe’s biggest car market within two years. AvtoVAZ, the country’s biggest carmaker, may have an IPO this fall, and truck maker KAMAZ is preparing a $1.5 billion investment programme that would allow it to double annual production to 100,000 units in five years.