Czech unemployment drops to a two decade low of 2.7% in April

bne IntelliNews May 13, 2019

Czech unemployment rate dropped to 2.7% in April from 3% in March, at its lowest level since June 1997, due to the continuing start of seasonal work, according to data by the Labour Office published on May 10.

Belarus foreign reserves increased by 4.5% m/m in April

bne IntelliNews May 10, 2019

The foreign exchange reserves of Belarus increased by $322.7mn, or 4.5% month-on-month, to $7.6bn in April following a 2.1% m/m growth in March, the National Bank of Belarus (NBB) said in a statement on May 4.

Czech PMI falls to its lowest level since December 2012

bne IntelliNews May 9, 2019

The Czech IHS Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) dropped further to its lowest level since December 2012, to 46.6 in April from 47.3 in March, driven by a strong decline in client demand

Czech National Bank hikes its interest rates for the first time in 2019

bne IntelliNews May 9, 2019

The Czech National Bank (CNB) increased the two-week repo rate by 25 base points to 2% from 1.75%, the highest level since February 2009.

Ukraine foreign reserves decrease by 0.5% m/m in April to $20.5bn

bne IntelliNews May 8, 2019

Ukraine's international reserves decreased by 0.5% month-on-month to $20.5bn in April following a 2.1% m/m growth in March, the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU).

Environment for SMEs improved in Western Balkans, Turkey but potential still unexploited

bne IntelliNews May 7, 2019

SMEs are under-represented in international trade and their contribution to value added remains low, the latest SME Policy Index finds.

Consumption the main growth driver in Romania as retail sales soar in 1Q19

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest May 7, 2019

Romania's average retail sales index was up 8.4% y/y in 1Q19, the highest annual growth rate in the past five quarters and no surprise after the net average wage rose by 14% y/y in January-February.

Russia's Services PMI eases notably in April, composite output down

bne IntelliNews May 6, 2019

Russia's services sector posted a notable slowdown in April, as the May 6 report by IHS Markit showed the softest rise in services output since June 2018, while the rate of new business growth slowed down to a ten-month low.

Russian crude production down 0.6% m/m in April, gas output rose 3.9% y/y

bne IntelliNews May 6, 2019

The decline in Russian crude output continued to be driven by the production cuts at integrated oil companies under the OPEC+ agreement. The exception was Gazprom Neft, which increased crude output 3.3% m/m.

Investment flows into EMs up – except Russia

bne IntelliNews May 2, 2019

Non-resident investment flows into emerging markets equity was up in April to $38bn in April, except Russia which saw $2.8bn of outflows as sanctions fears reappear.

Russia’s PMI remains in the black on rising new orders but slows from March

bne IntelliNews April 30, 2019

Russian manufacturers registered a moderate improvement in operating conditions in April on the back of growing production and a strong increase in client demand, but activity slowed from March’s strong result.

Prague recorded the lowest unemployment rate of 1.3% again among EU regions

bne IntelliNews April 30, 2019

Czech capital Prague again posted the lowest unemployment rate in the European Union of 1.3% in 2018, followed by Czech South-West region, according to Eurostat data published on April 29.

Bond flows into EMs and Russia flashing red, says BCS GM

Ben Aris in Berlin April 29, 2019

Bankers warned that bond markets were “flashing red” after nearly a billion dollars left emerging market bonds in the last week, reports BCS Global Markets.

Russia’s reserves top $490bn in April, highest level since 2014

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2019

The CBR has been able to build up reserves thanks to the record high current account surplus that topped $115bn in 2018.

Russia’s corporate profits rise strongly year-on-year in first months of 2019 but a boom is still a long way off

bne IntelliNews April 27, 2019

The various crises of recent years have caused a consolidation with the result that profits have become increasingly concentrated in the biggest companies and are growing.

Putin’s popularity rises mildly in April, but governors' popularity rises dramatically

bne IntelliNews April 27, 2019

The mood of the population in Russia improved in April as approval ratings rose mildly across the board, according to the latest political polls from independent pollster the Levada Center.

Russia's business confidence turns in another -2% result in April

bne IntelliNews April 27, 2019

There was a wobble last autumn, but since the start of this year business has been cautiously optimistic about how the rest of the year will turn out.

Russia’s CBR keeps rate unchanged, allows for cuts in 2Q19

bne IntelliNews April 26, 2019

As expected the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) kept rates on hold at 7.75%, but analysts say it will cut them at least once and maybe twice later this year

Russian foreign debt increased slightly in 1Q19

bne IntelliNews April 26, 2019

Russia’s external debt increase slightly in the first quarter, mainly due to the government’s debt to foreigners, Bank of Finland Institute for Economies in Transition (BOFIT) reports.