Latest articles from Ben Aris

Rossisky resurrection

November 7, 2005

Rossisky Kredit Bank nearly went under in Russia’s 1998 financial crisis. Ben Aris reports from Moscow on how it weathered the storm and its miraculous comeback as an investment bank.
Rossisky Kredit Bank (RKB) is back from the dead. One of the dozen banks that were household names in the 1990s, but collapsed during the 1998 financial crisis, RKB is the only big Russian bank to have paid off all its debts and returned to profit.
RKB’s recovery is a damning condemnation of its peers, which walked away from billions of dollars in debt and left hundreds of thousands of pensioners destitute after they lost their life savings.

Rising star of the CIS

October 3, 2005

Kazakhstan is one of the leading lights of the ex-Soviet Bloc, with such well-developed banking and pension sectors that they are searching for somewhere to invest their money.Ben Aris reports from Almaty.
The trees that cloak the buildings in central Almaty provide only limited protection from the hot midday sun, but Kazakhs window-shopping in the new Ramstore shopping mall at the top of the city’s slope beneath the Tien Shan mountains are keeping cool.

Drive for project finance

October 3, 2005

Buoyant bond and stock markets, as well as legal complications, have discouraged project finance growth. But, as Ben Aris reports from Moscow, the sector is predicted to grow swiftly in the near future.

Market rallies out of the blue

October 3, 2005

As the Yukos affair fades into a one-off event, both domestic and foreign investors are showing renewed interest in Russian equities and IPOs.

Sovereign bonds’ new lease of life

October 3, 2005

Having lain dormant since the 1998 financial crisis, Russia’s domestic sovereign bond market is suddenly the focus of frenetic activity.Ben Aris reports.

Mixed fortunes

July 4, 2005

Economic growth has been lifting the banking sector over the past year but the results have been varied. Ben Aris reports from Moscow.

Banks pile in to join Baltic boom

July 4, 2005

Ben Aris reports on the banking sector surge in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, spurred on by EU accession and foreign interest in the market.

Successful in its own right

July 4, 2005

Gazprombank has broken away from giant parent Gazprom to diversify and build on its foundations, its chief financial officer Alexander Sobol tells Ben Aris.

Mortgage movement

July 4, 2005

Mortgages could be the next big thing in Russia if the retail banks and the Kremlin have their way. 

Credit bureaux law is flawed

July 4, 2005

Rumours of mounting bad debt problems in retail banking have led Russia to pass a law allowing credit bureaux to set up – but their proliferation is getting out of hand. Ben Aris reports from Moscow.

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