Shares in Rusal, other Deripaska-controlled firms crash after USA sanctions


The US authorities announced the imposition of sanctions against a number of Russian officials, businessmen and companies on April 6.

Aluminium prices extended their rally on Wednesday to a sixth straight session, hitting an 11-week peak, amid persistent worry about shortages after the United States imposed sanctions on Russia's Rusal.

A Government spokeswoman was last night unable to say what the sanctions mean for Rusal and its employees here.

"Despite the significant reaction on the Russian financial markets, the impact on the Russian economy from the recent sanctions is likely to be much more muted than it was before", he told The Associated Press. The latest sanctions affected companies such as Sberbank, whose shares fell 17% in Moscow. The first US and European sanctions on Russian individuals and companies were imposed in 2014 following Russia's annexation of Crimea.

"Rusal will probably have to be bailed out by Russian state banks", wrote analysts at TS Lombard.

Concerns also spread to Glencore, the FTSE 100-listed mining and energy giant.

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Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg also resigned from his role as a Rusal director.

ALUMINIUM SPREADS: The April LME aluminium contract rose to a premium of $12 a tonne to the three-month futures CMALJ18-3, up from $7.25 on Tuesday and compared to a discount of $15.75 on Friday.

Deripaska's Rusal owns a 28 percent stake in Norilsk Nickel, the world's biggest palladium producer. He features in Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. election because of his ties to Paul Manafort, Donald Trump's former campaign chairman.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Moscow was looking at how to support the companies and sectors that have been hit.

In Moscow, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said his government should look at USA goods or goods produced in Russia by US companies when considering a possible response to the sanctions.

Despite the turbulence at some of Russia's biggest-name companies, there may be little wider impact on the Russian economy and growth rates because Russia has already adapted to previous rounds of global sanctions, said Oleg Kouzmin, the Moscow-based chief economist for Russia and ex-Soviet states at Renaissance Capital. "The situation is pretty egregious from the point of view of legality, it tramples on all kinds of norms, and so a thorough analysis is necessary", he said.