SBERBANK COMMENT: Economic update – sluggish performance

By analysts, Sberbank Investment Research.

Growth slowed at end 2012 not just in Russia but also in neighboring Kazakhstan, Belarus and Ukraine. In contrast to Russia, where slowing economic growth has been accompanied by softening consumption growth, the Kazakh, Belarusian and Ukrainian consumer markets remain overheated.

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We see serious risk of economic contraction in Ukraine this year unless the authorities urgently address the obvious shortcomings in their economic policy.

Growth will be slow in Belarus as the local authorities are tolerating high inflation and trying to maintain exchange rate stability.

Kazakhstan should be able to post stronger growth on the back of expected improvements in the mineral extraction sector. Industrial growth and investment decelerated y-o-y in 2H12 in all three countries, suggesting a very slow start to 2013, with some chance of improvement later in the year.

 

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