Russian stocks dropped at the opening. Blue chips lost over 2 percent on the MICEX exchange, led by RAO UES and Mosenergo (-4 percent each). Surgutneftegas, LUKoil and YUKOS shed about 3 percent. The MICEX index lost 3.06 percent to 580.79 points as of 11:00 a.m.
Experts believe that the lack of ruble liquidity prevents Russian stocks from rising. Other factors, which made investors to take profits before the holidays, are concerns about the Sayano Shushenskaya hydro power station. The deal on its privatization will be revised, and the station will be re-privatized. Metal prices are lower, as well as Russian Eurobonds. YUKOS has also affected the Russian stock market.
Representatives of the Israeli Defence Ministry responded to recent reports about the possible delivery of S-300 SAM systems from Russia to Syria. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Israel would destroy those systems
Russia is to start supplying S-300 air defence systems to Syria in the near future. The shipments will be conducted free of charge