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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rosneft's Shares Tumble 2.4%

bloombergPedestrians passing an advertisement for Rosneft in the center of Moscow.
Rosneft's shares fell on their Russian debut Monday, while Yukos went to court to prevent the company from officially listing its shares in London.

On the RTS, Rosneft shares closed at $7.42, down 2.4 percent from Friday's close of $7.60 in London and down 13 cents below the $7.55 offer price of the IPO. Some 648,500 shares were traded, worth almost $5 million, according to data from Bloomberg. Unrestricted trading is expected to begin in London on Wednesday.

Andrei Gromadin, an oil and gas analyst at MDM Bank, said the Rosneft drop reflected losses in other oil and gas stocks in the wake of a fall in oil prices. Brent futures fell to $76.43 in evening London trading.

"The pricing was impressive during the Rosneft IPO, and it's difficult to estimate that it could outperform from the offer price," Gromadin said. "It was priced at a considerable premium to other oil companies."

Other analysts have said Rosneft shares could rise if the state-controlled oil producer is awarded the right to develop new oil fields.

Meanwhile, in London a Yukos lawyer argued Monday that Rosneft should not be allowed to list its global depository receipts there because it would constitute the sale of stolen property.

Rosneft became Russia's second-biggest oil producer after it took over Yuganskneftegaz, the main production unit of Yukos, at a bargain price during a state auction to raise money to pay Yukos' mammoth back tax bill.

"Proceeds-of-crime legislation should be used to prevent rogue regimes from acting in criminal or unlawful ways," Yukos lawyer Clare Montgomery told London's High Court on Monday, Bloomberg reported.

But the Financial Services Authority, the British market regulator, argued that the listing should proceed as planned because the takeover of Yuganskneftegaz amounts to an "act of state" not subject to reversal in a British court. An FSA spokesman said the Yukos challenge did not even represent a court case but merely an application for permission to seek judicial review.

But Yukos hopes to convince Justice Arthur Charles to decide Tuesday to postpone the listing and undertake a full judicial review.

"Our argument is that the IPO is nothing more than a money laundering operation by Rosneft," Yukos spokeswoman Claire Davidson said by telephone from London on Monday.

On Tuesday the court will hear from Rosneft and the London Stock Exchange, followed by a summation from Yukos. A Rosneft spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

 Also Monday, the Moscow Arbitration Court registered a $1.3 billion claim against Yukos by Yuganskneftegaz. That brings the current claims against Yukos to $13.1 billion, Interfax reported.