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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Voucher's Best Week Yet

The Russian privatization voucher traded buoyantly this week, leaping 60 percent on the Russian Raw Materials and Commodities Exchange to 8, 770 rubles before settling slightly at the end of the week.

For the first time since the voucher was issued in October last year, the security traded above its nominal value of 10, 000 rubles mid-week with some trades recorded at 12, 000 rubles.

Under President Boris Yeltsin's privatization plan, Russia's 150 million citizens would swap their vouchers, which they received free, for shares in state firms at special voucher auctions now being held across Russia.

But the price of the voucher, which is traded all across Russia, fell to 4-5, 000 rubles throughout the winter because conservatives threatened to block the privatization process.

Investors have changed their minds and more now believe that the government will succeed in its plan to sell big state-owned factories to the public for vouchers.

Only 20 big firms were sold at auction in December but auctions for 1, 500 firms, including the giant ZiL truck factory and the Uralmash metal works have now been completed.

The Russian Materials and Commodities Exchange, the single biggest voucher trading floor in Russia, said in an analysis bulletin Friday that the voucher price had jumped because the market was now confident major properties would be put on the market.

Investors were encouraged by a Yeltsin decree of May 8 which said all firms on the privatization list had to sell 29 percent of their shares for vouchers within three months.