Rusal shares soar, aluminium falls as U.S. lifts sanctions

Rusal shares soar, aluminium falls as U.S. lifts sanctions

"The companies have also agreed to unprecedented transparency for Treasury into their operations by undertaking extensive, ongoing auditing, certification, and reporting requirements", the department's statement said.

WASHINGTON/MOSCOW-U.S. President Donald Trump's administration lifted sanctions on January 27 on the core empire of Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska, including aluminum giant Rusal and its parent En+, despite a Democrat-led push to maintain them.

Aluminum giant Rusal said on Monday Jean-Pierre Thomas had resigned as chairman and director of the company as a pre-requisite for a decision by the United States to lift sanctions on the company.

The United States extended several times its deadline for USA consumers to wind down business with Rusal.

Amid questions about Trump's relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin, many members of the U.S. Congress - both Democrats and some of Trump's fellow Republicans - have been questioning the administration's plan to water down the toughest penalties imposed on Russian entities since the 2014 annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

Rusal's shares rose as much as 6.7 percent in Hong Kong on Monday, gaining for an eighth straight day.

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Earnings in 2019 will be US$10.45 to US$10.90 per share, down 15 cents from the prior range, the company said. Caterpillar shares sank 9.13 percent when it issued lower-than-expected profit targets for 2019.

The sanctions on the aluminum company Rusal, its parent company EN+, and power firm JSC EuroSibEnergowere were announced in April 2018.

"The Company also announces that Mr. Philippe Bernard Henri Mailfait... has tendered his resignation as an independent non-executive Director", the statement read.

It was noted that "under the terms of their removal from OFAC's List of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons" the companies "have reduced Oleg Deripaska's direct and indirect shareholding stake in these companies and severed his control" over them.

Congressional Democrats tried to block the action, citing concerns about the Trump administration's motives at a time when special counsel Robert Mueller is continuing his investigation of Russian Federation interference in the 2016 presidential election and possible connections to the Trump campaign. The sanctions on the company spurred demand for Chinese metal.

Moscow has denied seeking to influence the USA election. Deripaska is a client of Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort and Christopher Bancroft Burnham, who served on Trump's State Department transition team, was appointed to the board of EN+ as part of the deal to lift the sanctions.

Sanctions relief for Rusal, the world's second-largest aluminum producer, will remove a source of uncertainty from the aluminum market.

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