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09/01/1998 10:08:01 Russia shares down, rouble below cen. bank rate

MOSCOW, Sept 1 (Reuters) - Economic and political turmoil

dragged down prices on Russia's nearly frozen share markets

close to historic lows on Tuesday and traders said no surge in

activity was likely in the immediate future.

The benchmark RTS1-Interfax share index <.IRTS> was down

3.97 percent to 63.01, close to its record low of 61.15, by

0900 GMT, after two hours of trade. But turnover was a thin

$128,153.

"Many share prices are already at the level they were during

privatisation. It is just same with PRINs (debt) being at

default prices, so it is doubtful (the market) could be affected

by any kind of news," said ING Barings <ING.AS> trader Oleg

Galkin.

Trade on Russia's main foreign exchange market, the Moscow

Interbank Currency Exchange (MICEX), remained suspended by

central bank order.

However, the rouble traded on MICEX's electronic SELT

<MMVBSELT> system at an average of 11.2108 to the dollar, below

the central bank's official rate of 9.3301 to the dollar.

On Monday, after the market closed, the State Duma lower

house of parliament rejected Viktor Chernomyrdin's nomination

for Prime Minister. The Duma will vote again next Monday.

"Until Monday things are probably going to be pretty quiet,"

Galkin added.

Unified Energy System <EESR.RTS> was trading at

$0.0301/$0.0325 bid/offer against Monday's close of

$0.0320/$0.0345, LUKoil <LKON.RTS> at $3.50/3.75 against

$3.77/$3.90 and Mosenergo <MSNG.RTS> at $0.013/$0.014 against

$0.0150/0.0165.

At 0940 GMT the Reuters composite index <.RRC1> was up 2.26

percent to 48.01.

((Moscow Newsroom, +7095 941-8520

moscow.newsroom@reuters.com))

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