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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

MT Index Joins Stock Upswing

Russian shares, leveraged by the Nasdaq’s gains, rebounded sharply Thursday on investor enthusiasm.

The dollar-denominated Moscow Times Index of 50 leading shares soared 7.52 percent to 118.25 on strong turnover of $13.07 million.

The RTS index surged 8.49 percent to 142.15, a hair margin below last year’s close of 143.29.

But the gains are mostly a reaction to Nasdaq’s spurt Wednesday and the market remains bound to the United States’ broad economic health and a number of other factors such oil prices and talks with the Paris Club, traders said.

"All [gains] occurred in the first one to 1 1/5 hours after the market opened," said Andrei Usachyov, a trader with Prospect brokerage. "The rest of the day, we bounced in a tight range not exceeding 2 percent."

The day before, the RTS plunged 8.56 percent to 131.02 — its lowest level in 13 months. But the U.S. Federal Reserve’s decision to cut a key rate put the down-trodden stocks back on the tracks.

Unified Energy Systems gained 12 percent to 7.92 cents, LUKoil was up 12.1 percent to $9.25 and Surgutneftegaz jumped 13.1 percent to 20.7 cents.

United Financial Group sounded a cautionary note Thursday, pointing out that Russian shares remain very volatile and dependent on U.S. markets.

"The market’s tracking of the Nasdaq is likely to work both ways," United Financial Group reported in its morning comment Thursday.

"We are going to see pretty much the same story in the coming weeks," agreed Usachyov.

But some signs of hope were coming from other overseas markets that continue to stubbornly defy downward stock trends in the United States.

Standard & Poor’s/IFC Global Indices for both Turkey and Brazil were up 13.80 percent in December.