Russian central bank extends restriction on trading 'unfriendly' company shares

A Russian state flag flies over the Central Bank headquarters in Moscow
A Russian state flag flies over the Central Bank headquarters in Moscow, Russia March 29, 2021. A sign reads: "Bank of Russia". REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
  • This content was produced in Russia where the law restricts coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine.

MOSCOW, March 24 (Reuters) - Russia's central bank on Friday extended a ban on retail investors buying shares in companies from what Russia deems "unfriendly" countries for another six months.

Russia has labelled all countries that imposed sanctions on it over its military campaign in Ukraine - including the 27 members of the European Union - as "unfriendly" and levelled a range of financial counter-sanctions against them.

The central bank said the ban on selling securities of companies from "unfriendly" countries to so-called unqualified investors would be carried forward until Oct. 1, 2023. The central bank says its measures are designed to protect Russian retail investors from the impact of sanctions.

Millions of Russian investors saw some of their holdings in numerous foreign companies frozen last year after Western sanctions and Russian counter-measures disrupted Russian brokers' and exchanges' ability to trade foreign securities.

Reporting by Elena Fabrichnaya; Writing by Jake Cordell; Editing by Robert Birsel

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