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Russian investments in foreign property halved during Q2 2015
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Russian investments in foreign property halved during Q2 2015

Russia’s Central Bank has revealed plummeting foreign investments by its citizens abroad. In Q2 2015 investments fell 50% to $229 million against $473 million in Q2 2014.

Funds exiting Russia to buy property abroad,USD million

This record low was last matched in the second quarter of 2010. Between April and June 2015 Russians investments were just a third of the $676 million peak in Q4 2013.

Spending trends reverse

Traditionally, Russians spent less during the first quarter than the second each year, but this changed in 2014 and investments dropped between the first and second quarter. This year, Russian investments fell 18.5% between Q1 2015 and Q2 2015.

The Central Bank of the Russian Federation has been publishing data on cross-border property purchases since 2009. While investments increased until 2013, the market has been caught in a downward trend since Q1 2014.

From April to June 2015, the share of foreign property purchases made up only 3.5% of the cumulative total of money transfers from Russia. Standing at $6.474 billion for this year’s second quarter in total, it is nearly half that of Q2 2014 at $10.226 billion. Top non-CIS countries receiving Russian funds during the last quarter included Switzerland, Latvia, USA, UK, China and Cyprus.

Commercial real estate purchases increase

Russian investments in overseas property has also fallen 50% since last year. However, this drop has mainly affected the residential segment. However, Tranio research shows that investments in commercial property have actually grown 30% as Russians move to protect their assets against local political and economic risks. The most popular destinations for commercial real estate are Germany and London.

The Russian ruble has been pummeled by plunging oil prices and sanctions over the country’s role in the Ukraine crisis. At the same time, successful Russian companies and wealthy citizens earning profits abroad have seen their tax burden increase with new regulations on Controlled Foreign Corporations.

Yulia Kozhevnikova, Tranio

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