Skip to main content

Millions of Russians will have to take a test to prove they understand financial markets if they want to carry on trading foreign stocks, under a central bank plan aimed at stemming potentially heavy losses among retail investors.

The central bank had sought to limit access for non-professional investors, arguing that some lacked the knowledge and experience needed to play foreign markets without undue risk.

But after talks last week with Russian brokerages and two market lobby groups, it agreed to introduce a test instead, the bank’s first deputy governor Sergey Shvetsov said on Tuesday.

Story continues below advertisement

“The testing which we have agreed on with self-governing organisations regarding splitting investors to ‘qualified’ and ’non-qualified’ will be a natural barrier against ... emotional purchases,” he told a news conference.

Mikhail Mamuta, who heads the bank’s consumer protection division, said the test was likely to contain between five and 10 questions.

Shvetsov, who gave no further details about how it would be structured, said increasing numbers of Russians were taking an interest in foreign stocks and bonds. Data from the Moscow stock exchange shows it alone has more that 3 million retail clients.

Anatoly Aksakov, who chairs the lower parliamentary house’s finance committee, said the legislature would look to pass the test proposals into law this month.

The compromise marks a victory for the growing ranks of banks and other companies in Russia that providing brokerage services to retail clients.

Proposing trading restrictions last year, Shvetsov said investments in foreign shares would deprive the Russian economy of investment capital.

Critics of that plan cited political tensions between Russia and the West as a factor.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter
To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies