- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer, Moscow It’s not a good time to be a steelmaker — not if you are in Russia, not if you are in China, and certainly not if you are in the US or the European Union. But if mining manganese, the vital steel-hardening alloy, is what you do for a living, the […]

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer, Moscow In Russian, it’s called шило в жопе; literally, a bootmaker’s awl in the arse. In New York Yiddish, it’s shpilkes in tukhas, which is a bit gentler because the sharp instrument in the posterior is a needle. The meaning, in general and in the Japanese case, is a case of self-induced […]

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer, Moscow In the Kremlin corridors under the new management, it is generally acknowledged that one of the stupidest things former President Dmitry Medvedev ever did was to order Russia’s representative on the UN Security Council to abstain from the vote and veto of the no-fly zone resolution aimed at the Muammar Qaddafi […]

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer, Moscow Barry Cheung (second left), the new board chairman of United Company Rusal and the first non-Russian chairman of a Russian monopoly, is viewed by his countrymen and business peers as a technocrat, a politician, and a businessman, in that order. The one business he reports in the curriculum vitae released by […]

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer, Moscow There are only so many ways a Russian company can make its performance look better to the markets without resorting to magic tricks.

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer in Moscow How much gold should potential investors in Alexei Mordashov’s gold-mining venture, now named NordGold, think they are buying into?

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer in Moscow Transcontainer, the state-owned Russian Railways box transport company, has revealed that it will not list shares in its initial public offering on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The announcement confirms that for state-owned shares, the Kremlin sees little value, and considerable risk, in associating with the Hong Kong Exchange (HKEx). […]

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer in Moscow According to the Chinese tradition, the original Budai (aka Laughing Buddha) was an eccentric Zen Buddhist monk. He lived in the Fenghua province during the Late Liang Dynasty in the first years of the 10th century. His name translates into English as “Promise this”.

- Print This Post Print This Post

  Benchmark – LME aluminium, cash price

- Print This Post Print This Post

By John Helmer in Moscow Hong Kong Exchange executives and the Hong Kong stock market regulator appear to be cracking and splitting under the strain of a phantom share listing and sale for United Company Rusal, Russia’s aluminium monopoly and one of the world’s leading producers of bauxite, alumina and primary aluminium. Although anonymous sources […]