Latest articles from Central & Eastern Europe

From bookkeepers to capitalist Innovators

January 2, 2006

Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz outlines the tortuous process of ditching socialist operating modes that ex-communist banks were forced to endure in order to become the competitive institutions they are today.

The future looks bright

December 5, 2005

Romania is speeding towards EU accession, as witnessed by the growing sophistication of its banking sector, and a stream of sell-offs. Tom Blass reports.

Prompt action has paid off

December 5, 2005

Efforts to overcome the turbulence of 2004 have resulted in a growing economy and a positive outlook.

Options for cutting debt

December 5, 2005

Ben Aris reports from Moscow on the increasing trend of using structured products to cope with consolidation.

Back to the futures

December 5, 2005

Futures and options trading in Russia is making a tentative comeback since its curtailment in the wake of the 1998 financial crisis. Ben Aris in Moscow reports.
There are few places in the world where the future is less certain than in Russia, but maturing valuations of Russian stocks means an increasing number of investors are willing to bet on it.

Central bank finds its teeth

December 5, 2005

Russia’s central bank has moved out of the Kremlin’s pocket and is starting to regulate the sector aggressively. Ben Aris reports from Moscow.

Overcautious approach may impede progress

November 7, 2005

President Alexander Lukashenko’s tight controls have ensured that Belarusians have not suffered in the slow transition to a market economy. But the same restrictions are curbing growth and foreign investment, as Ben Aris reports from Minsk.

Foreign banks’ domination of Bulgaria set to continue

November 7, 2005

With more than 83% of Bulgaria’s banking assets under the control of foreign banks or financial institutions, who has gained from the country’s banking privatisation in the past decade?

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.

Quality pays off for Gazprombank

November 7, 2005

Investors are falling over themselves to buy bonds issued by Russia’s state-owned Gazprombank. Edward Russell-Walling explains why.
Russian banks are not always synonymous with credit quality. When Gazprombank came to market in September with a 10-year bond, however, the issue was more than six times oversubscribed. There are Russian banks, and Russian banks.

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