Russian bonds trading volumes shrivel as sanctions bite

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Illustration shows a Russian rouble banknote and a descending stock graph

LONDON – Trading volumes in Russian bonds evaporated on Monday after Western nations stepped up sanctions in the wake of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, data from trading platform Marketaxess showed on Tuesday.

Marketaxess said late on Tuesday that it will not provide trading on Russian sovereign bonds and corporates, until further notice.

The European Union, the United States and its allies have imposed sanctions on Russia’s central bank, its top businesses, oligarchs and officials, including President Vladimir Putin himself, and barred some Russian banks from the SWIFT international payments system.

Only 1.2 million euros ($1.34 million) were traded on Monday compared to 53 million euros on Friday, according to the data.

Local currency trading showed a similar picture with 8.4 million roubles ($86,846) of debt traded on Monday compared to nearly 27 billion roubles on Friday.

On a combined basis across roubles, euros and U.S. dollars, volumes plunged on Monday to a 10th of Friday’s trade, data from the trading platform showed.

($1 = 0.8949 euros)

($1 = 96.7220 roubles)

(Reporting by Saikat Chatterjee, Karin Strohecker and Alden Bentley; Editing by Tomasz Janowski and Sandra Maler)