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UPDATE 1-Russia stocks, rouble up as Middle East tension flares

* Russian stocks follow oil price upwards amid Syria tensions

* Retailers Magnit and X5 publish contrasting sales results

* Rouble up against dollar and euro

(Updates prices, adds details and comments)

By Jason Bush and Zlata Garasyuta

MOSCOW, Oct 11 (Reuters) - Russian stocks edged up on Thursday, shrugging off morning losses as escalating tension over Syria pushed up oil prices, which also helped lift the rouble and Russian bond prices.

At 1335 GMT the rouble-denominated MICEX index

was up 0.3 percent to 1465.3 points, while the dollar-denominated RTS

was up 0.6 percent to 1493.2 points.

Russia's markets were lifted by a rising oil price, on a day when Turkey intercepted a Russian plane bound for Syria, provoking a diplomatic row between Moscow and Ankara.

The incident highlighted concern that the Syrian conflict may spread and cause wider instability in the Middle East, the world's largest oil-producing region, coming a few days after Turkey retaliated against cross-border shelling from Syria.

Brent

gained almost $1 during the day, pushing above $115 per barrel, and has gained over $7 in the past week.

The firming oil price enabled Russia's markets to shrug off a lacklustre start to the day, when Russia fell in line with other emerging markets after Standard & Poor's cut Spain's sovereign rating by two notches on Wednesday.

Despite the afternoon rally, Russia's market is presently hamstrung by scarce liquidity, with many investors husbanding cash in advance of an expected $2 billion IPO by Russian telecommunications company Megafon, said a trader at a large western bank.

"Everything revolves around the lack of liquidity on the market ahead of the Megafon IPO. There's a feeling that investors are holding back money - to preserve ammunition, so to speak," he said.

Fast-expanding Russian retailer Magnit

outperformed the market, rising 1.2 percent, a day after publishing bullish nine-month sales results.

Dmitry Ryzhkov, head of foreign sales at Alfa Bank, said that investors are transferring into Magnit's locally listed shares in preference to its internationally traded depositary receipts, which trade at a sizeable 25 percent premium.

"No one wants to be underinvested in Magnit," he said.

But larger London-listed Russian retailer X5

was

down 0.3 percent on Thursday, after disappointing with a 10.4 percent annual rise in third-quarter sales.

The oil price rise also helped the rouble. At 1335 GMT the rouble was up 0.3 percent at 31.00 to the dollar

,

up 0.1 percent at 40.10 to the euro

and up 0.2 percent to 35.09 against the basket .

The yield on Russia's benchmark 2030 Eurobond

was marginally tighter at 2.82 percent, compared with 2.86 percent on Wednesday. Russian Latest Net % % Change Markets Change Change on year STOCKS MICEX 1465.28 4.35 0.30 4.50 RTS 1493.15 9.31 0.63 8.05 London 859.38 3.99 0.47 10.39 ADRs Emrg Mkt 995.70 3.61 0.36 8.65 Indx MSCI 796.85 3.81 0.48 8.16 Russia Sberbank 92.77 0.48 0.52 17.64 VTB 0.05 0.00 1.19 -7.00 Gazprom 154.92 -0.38 -0.24 -9.56 LUKOIL 1943.70 6.70 0.35 14.17 Rostelecom 135.00 -0.50 -0.37 -11.18 Dollar/Rou 31.00 -0.10 -0.33 -3.59 le Euro/Roubl 40.10 -0.02 -0.06 -3.91 Rouble 35.09 -0.07 -0.19 -3.75 basket DEBT Bid Ask %Rtn Coupon Russia 7.58 7.50 0.28 7.60 10-yr bond MONEY Bid Ask Close MARKET Overnight 6.29 6.79 6.19 rate TABLE FROM POWER PLUS PRO All data taken from Reuters at 1335 GMT

(Reporting by Jason Bush and Zlata Garasyuta; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

((jason.bush@thomsonreuters.com)(Tel: +7 495 775 1242))

Keywords: RUSSIA MARKETS/