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Birth Rate, Mortality and Situation of Regions at the Onset of the Second Wave of Pandemic

Ramilya R. Khasanova – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Natalia V. Zubarevich – Main Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Doctor of Geographic Sciences, Professor (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Over the first ten months of 2020, the natural population decline in Russia hit 486,000 people, which is the maximum for the last 14 years. In January-October, the birth rate decreased by 57,200 persons and the number of deaths went up by 151,200 persons compared to the same period of the previous year. Both these factors led to a significant growth in natural population decline.

The onset of the pandemic second wave resulted in the deterioration of industrial dynamic and to its decline in two thirds of Russian regions. Investment decrease recorded in over half of regions was accompanied by their concentration in the federal cities and major oil and gas areas. The labor market reported a notable decline in part-time employment however the registered unemployment rate was slowly decreasing. Critical decrease in incomes of population has an unfathomable regional dynamic.

Decrease in tax and non-tax revenues of regions’ budgets has been by more than twice offset by transfers. Public health and social policy remained the focus of regions’ budgets expenditure, and in Moscow it is also national economy. Advanced growth of expenses against revenues resulted in budgets’ deficit in half of the regions.

The article was written on the basis of the RANEPA state assignment research programme.

Key words: birth rate, mortality rate, coronavirus, regional development, incomes of population, employment, regions’ budgets.

Corporate Lending in January-October 2020

Sergey A. Zubov – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Сandidate of Economic Sciences, Associate Professor (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Amid the pandemic, Russian banks adapted to new conditions and kept increasing lending volumes. A pickup in the corporate segment is facilitated by state support measures for business, the Russian Central Bank’s regulatory policy and record-low interest rates. The overdue debt ratio remains stable, however, as regulatory easing measures cease to be in effect credit institutions may face overdue debt growth.

Key words: Russian banking sector, corporate lending, Bank of Russia, pandemic.

Socio-Economic Situation Between the First and Second Wave of Pandemic: Q3 2020 Fallout

Aleksandra G. Polyakova – Leading Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Doctor of Economic Sciences, Professor (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Marina A. Eliseeva – Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Victor Yu. Lyashok – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Russian GDP in Q3 2020 went up in relative terms following a slight decline in Q2. During January-September 2020, GDP contracted by 3,5% compared to the same period of the previous year. Total budget revenues decreased by 12,1%. Budget expenditure posted growth across all enlarged lines with the highest growth in expenses on public health (by 92,4%), social policy (by 32,5%), and housing and utilities infrastructure (by 84,6%).

In October 2020, retail trade turnover nearly hit the level of October 2019 in comparable prices. Retail sales in January-October 2020 contracted by 4.6% in annual terms including by 2.6% on food products and by 6,3% on non-food products. The physical volume of paid services decreased by 18% against January-October 2019.

The number of employed went up from 10.0 mn people in May to 70,5 mn people in August-September 2020. The ILO unemployment rate stayed at 6,3–6,4% slightly falling in autumn following the peak in August. In September 2020, duration of hours worked and the count of temporary absent from work returned to the pre-crisis rate. The number of employed in the informal sector also hit the pre-crisis rate.

The number of jobless registered in employment agencies went up growing till the end of September when it hit nearly 3,7 mn people of which 3,3 mn received unemployed benefits. At the end of October these indexes contracted to 3.5 and 1,7 mn people, respectively.

In January-September 2020, the real disposable cash incomes contracted by 4,3% on January-September 2019, the real accrued wages and the real pensions increased by 2,6 and 2,7%, respectively. Incomes from business contracted by 16.5% in real terms, and from property – by 8,2%. The volume of social payments went up by 12,1%.

The article was written on the basis of the RANEPA state assignment research programme.

Key words: consumption of goods and services, labor market, unemployment, wages, income of population, coronavirus, social payments.

Agricultural Sector During the Pandemic

Denis S. Ternovskiy – Leading Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Doctor of Economic Sciences, Professor (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Natalia I. Shagayda – Director of Center for Agro-Food Policy of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration; Head of Agricultural Policy Department of the Gaidar Institute, Doctor of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The agricultural sector saw sustainable production amid the pandemic, growth of 1.8% over ten months. The agricultural sector’s exports are surpassing the 2019 volumes and as early as December exceeded the 2020 FP Target Indicator “Exports of the Agricultural Sector’s Products” amid stagnating imports. The depreciation of the national currency and appreciation of prices on international markets incited motivation for exporting products, which in its turn led to a rise in domestic prices. With households’ incomes falling, the government had to develop new instruments to regulate food prices.

Key words: agricultural sector, AIC, food products, food prices, food prices regulation, pandemic.

Russian Labor Market: Adaptation Time

Victor Yu. Lyashok – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Results of the December wave of monitoring of the social status and behavior of the population (telephone survey) do not demonstrate any deterioration at the Russian labor market. Despite the pandemic challenging situation, respondents note a slight increase in wages and salaries; the share of those working remotely from home is still high for Russia; the number of unemployed explaining job loss due to the pandemic remains relatively low. However, there are no signs of a noticeable recovery compared to the September monitoring wave. Rather, this can refer to adaptation to the prevailing external circumstances.

The article was written on the basis of the RANEPA state assignment research programme.

Key words: labor market, population survey, pandemic, wage, share of remote workers, unemployment.

Survey of Current Business (October 2020 - January 2021)

Sergey P. Aukutsionek – Head of Center for Transition Economy Studies, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Andrey S. Yegorov – Senior Researcher of the Center for Transition Economy Studies, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tatyana V. Serzhantova – Senior Researcher of the Center for Transition Economy Studies, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Stanislav V. Belyakov – Researcher of the Center for Transition Economy Studies, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In October 2020, the relative level of stocks rose slightly, but in general remained at a rather low level – 74%. The diffusion index of the order-book level lost 17 points per month. The diffusion index of prices for purchased goods increased by 9 points and reached 80% for the first time in two years.

Key words: Russia, industry, industrial enterprises, price level, wages, employment, output, investment, indebtedness to banks, order-book level, stocks of finished products, capacity utilization rate, financial situation, production restrictive factors.

Impact of Economic Crises 2008-2009 and 2020 on the Labor Market

Andrey N. Pokida – Director of Center for Social and Political Monitoring of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Сandidate of Sociological Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Natalia V. Zybunovskaya – Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The article presents the results of a sociological survey of the employed population, conducted in 2020, in comparison with the results of a similar study in 2009. The aim of both studies was to study the impact of the economic crisis on the state and dynamics of the Russian labor market.

Both economic crises have negatively affected the living conditions of the majority of the employed population. However, if the results of the financial and economic crisis of 2008–2009 ordinary workers felt most affected, the 2020 crisis hit entrepreneurs much harder.

The article was written on the basis of the RANEPA state assignment research programme.

Key words: labor market, pandemic, economic crisis, employment, financial situation, professional activity, business activity.

Global Financial Markets in 2020: Preliminary Results

Alexander E. Abramov – Head of Department for Analysis of Institutions and Financial Markets of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Andrey G. Kosyrev – Younger Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alexander D. Radygin – Member of the Directors Board of the Gaidar Institute; Director of the Institute of Mathematics and Information Technology Economics, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Doctor of Economic Sciences, Professor (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Maria I. Chernova – Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Despite the pandemic and economic recession, the year 2020 can be regarded as quite successful for numerous financial markets in terms of appreciation of various currencies against the US Dollar and equity indices’ positive yield. The Russian ruble was among the weakest currencies and the RTS index yield was negative. With the Russian ruble and Russian companies’ equities being undervalued in 2020, one can expect the strengthening of the Russian national currency and equities’ positive rate of return in 2021.

Economic relief packages put in place by a host of countries have been instrumental in mitigating the pandemic’s implications and hold out a hope of growth revival in 2021. However, after the pandemic most major economies will face the challenge of raising their global competitive edge and carrying out structural reforms. As seen from China’s experience, in dealing with the specified challenges they give preference explicitly to the idea of the state’s greater interference in the economy. It remains to be seen to what extent such a policy is effective and needed in other countries.

Key words: financial markets, share indexes, currency rates, China’s economy.

Migration to Russia: The Lowest Rate in a Decade

Yulia F. Florinskaya – Leading Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Geographic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nikita V. Mkrtchyan – Leading Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Geographic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In 2020, the net migration of the population of Russia has sharply decreased, amounting to 81.7 thousand people in January-September. By early winter, the number of labor migrants in Russia decreased by 25%, while the share of those legalized in the labor market has not changed. As the epidemiological situation normalizes, the scale and vector of migration should return to their previous values.

Key words: migration, long-term migration, temporary migration, labor migrants, work permit, patents, pandemic.

World’s Oil Market in Late 2020

Andrey S. Kaukin – Head of Department for System Analysis of Sectoral Markets of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration; Acting Head of Center for Real Sector, Head of Department of Sectoral Markets and Infrastructure of the Gaidar Institute, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Eugenia M. Miller – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The refusal to sharply increase oil output by the OPEC+ deal participants and the news of the launch of vaccinations against the coronavirus were positively received by the world oil market: on December 10, for the first time since March 2020, Brent crude futures rose above $50 per barrel. The risks threatening oil price recovery and market balancing have been the additional containment measures adopted in a number of countries in response to the “second wave” of the pandemic and the resulting demand shrinkage. The upward trend may be sustained by the start of mass-vaccination programs and the subsequent confirmation of their effectiveness, as well as the continued concerted actions by the OPEC+ participants.

Key words: crude oil, global oil market, oil production, oil prices, OPEC+, pandemic second wave, Covid-19 vaccination.

Consolidation of the Russian Power Grid: Problems and Results

Boris I. Fayn – Director of the Center for Economic Research of Infrastructure Industries of the Natural Monopoly Economics Institute, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sergei V. Repetyuk – Deputy Director of the Natural Monopoly Economics Institute, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The article analysis issues related to the consolidation of integrated power grid implemented in the Russian Federation aimed at the scaling back the number electricity transmitters and formation of a single integrated power grid center. The authors analyze theoretical base for consolidation implementation, propose classification of its potential fallout. They have analyzed indexes dynamic characterizing the state of electricity services in Russian regions. They have also revealed issued related to the putting in place measures on the integrated power grid consolidation. The article provides proposals and recommendations on the updating of mechanisms of the integrated power grid consolidation aimed at the achievement of its key objectives and ensuring the maximum efficacy of the sector performance.

The article was written on the basis of the RANEPA state assignment research programme.

Key words: natural monopolies, consolidation, electric-power transmission, tariff regulation, territorial electricity transmitters, integrated power grid.

Monetary Policy and Inflation Rate: The Outcome of 2020

Alexandra V. Bozhechkova – Head of Monetary Policy Department of the Gaidar Institute; Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Pavel V. Trunin – Head of Center for Macroeconomics and Finance of the Gaidar Institute; Director of Center for Central Banks Studies of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Doctor of Economic Sciences (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Based on the results of 2020, amid crisis conditions the inflation rate sped up to 4.9%, an increase of 0.9 p.p. over the Russian Central Bank’s inflation target. In H1 2020, on the back of a large-scale reduction in consumer demand the inflation rate was below the target. In H2, proinflationary factors picked up. After gradual reduction in the key interest rate from 6.25% in January 2020 to 4.25% per annum in July 2020, the Central Bank of Russia suspended the easing of the monetary policy. In H1 2021, the inflation rate will keep speeding up, however, by our estimates, it will be close to the Bank of Russia inflation target by the year-end.

Key words: inflation, monetary policy, key rate, capital outflow, Bank of Russia.

Financial Banking Performance in January-November 2020

Sergey A. Zubov – Senior Researcher of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Candidate of Economic Sciences, Associate Professor (Moscow, Russia). Е-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Due to the epidemiological situation, the structure and dynamics of financial performance in the banking sector have experienced changes. Amid declining margins, instability of financial markets and the unstable position of borrowers, the Russian credit institutions were forced to significantly adjust their market strategies. This resulted in a decrease of profitability of the banking system compared to the previous year.

Key words: Russian banking sector, financial banking performance, banks profit, banks profitability, pandemic.