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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Surgut Falls Nearly 5%, RTS Slides

Blue chips slid again Thursday but turnover dropped off with Surgutneftegaz showing the biggest percentage decline amid continued selling of UES.

The RTS index fell 1.61 percent to 324.46 on turnover of $10.99 million. The Reuters index of the MICEX ruble traded exchange fell 1.02 percent to 1,212.62 on turnover of 2.68 billion rubles ($84 million). The Reuters-MICEX dollar based index of liquid stocks on several exchanges fell 1.01 percent to 805.92.

"Prices are starting to diverge from Russia's fundamentals -- on the downside. With many international players on the sidelines, locals and traders play beachball with Russia," said Ari Krel, portfolio manager at UFG. "A sustainable rally may occur when the bulk of participants have experienced the maximum amount of pain. Given the five failed rallies in the RTS in the last six months, that may not be too far away."

National electricity company Unified Energy Systems fell 2.81 percent to $0.0762, and traders said selling in the share, which sent it off nearly 5 percent in the previous session, had slackened.

Traders said forced selling had set in as the share dropped when aggressive local buyers suddenly left the market. They said oil shares didn't flinch at OPEC's decision to leave export quotas untouched.

No. 3 oil producer Surgutneftegaz fell 4.6 percent to $0.3320 amid anticipating of a downgrade from a local broker.

Top producer LUKoil fell 2.24 percent.