Russia’s Stock Market Rises After Being Closed for a Month

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Stocks in Russia, closed since the end of February following the invasion of Ukraine, began trading again Thursday.

Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The Russian stock market, which has been closed since the end of February following the invasion of Ukraine, partially reopened on Thursday and rose as much as 12% before paring gains.

The MOEX Russia Index began trading 33 stocks out of the index’s normal 50. Trading only will be opened for four hours. At last check, the index was rising nearly 8%. Stocks such as energy giant Lukoil and Gazprom rose.

Short-selling was banned, and Russian brokerages weren’t allowed to let foreign clients sell securities. With those measures put in place, a huge drop at the open wasn’t expected.

The market last traded on Feb. 25, following harsh sanctions on Moscow following its invasion of Ukraine. The central bank raised its key interest rate to the highest level in two decades, and rubles — the local currency — plunged to a record low. President Vladimir Putin looked to prop up the ruble Wednesday by saying Russia only would accept rubles in gas deals with “unfriendly” nations.

On Feb. 24, the day Russia invaded Ukraine, the MOEX fell as much as 45%.

The question going into Thursday was, of course, how much pent-up selling — or buying — there would be when the market finally reopened. The market’s gains Thursday were an indication that buyers had been waiting for trading to once again begin following the month-long closure.

Write to Joe Woelfel at and Ben Levisohn at


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