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Markets

Russia opens Eurobond books as market cheers Lavrov-Blinken talks

  • The finance ministry is guiding investors towards a yield of around 2.875% for its upcoming euro-denominated paper, two financial market sources said, expecting to price the issue and a top-up of November-2027 Eurobond as soon as on Thursday.
Published May 20, 2021
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MOSCOW: Russia has opened up books for a new 15-year euro-denominated Eurobond and a top-up of another outstanding issue on Thursday, as markets welcomed high-ranked talks between Moscow and Washington's top diplomats and easing of some US sanctions.

The finance ministry is guiding investors towards a yield of around 2.875% for its upcoming euro-denominated paper, two financial market sources said, expecting to price the issue and a top-up of November-2027 Eurobond as soon as on Thursday.

The ministry has picked Gazprombank, Sberbank CIB and VTB Capital to arrange the deal and the top-up, setting the price guidance for the latter at no less than 98.5% of its nominal value, sources said. The total amount is yet to be announced.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday in their first in-person meeting trying to find ways to work together, following a steady deterioration in ties since Moscow annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.

Also on Wednesday, the United States decided to waive some sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline Russia is building to bypass Ukraine, something a Lavrov deputy has said would help normalise relations.

The market welcomed the news, with the rouble hitting near a two-week high versus the dollar on Thursday on easing geopolitical tensions.

Pricing for the both issues is expected on Thursday, sources said. Foreign investors own the majority of Russian Eurobonds that offer investment-grade ratings, or 54% as of April 1, and Moscow is using borrowings to finance its social obligations.

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