Goldman Sachs restructures Russian asset holdings -RBC, citing sources

MOSCOW (Reuters) -Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has restructured its assets in Russia, the RBC daily reported on Monday, citing two investment market sources, a move that could take the U.S. bank closer to a full exit from the country.

U.S. banks have cut exposure to Russia since it sent tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine last year, but foreign lenders require special permission from President Vladimir Putin to sell stakes.

Goldman Sachs, which in March said it was winding down its business in Russia, in November said it had reduced its credit exposure to Russia by 9% to $205 million in the third quarter.

One of RBC’s sources said Goldman’s asset portfolio, which includes minority stakes in recruitment firm Headhunter and real estate database Cian, had been sold to local management.

Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

An Aug. 5 decree, signed by Putin, banned investors from so-called unfriendly countries from selling shares in key energy projects and banks. That decree, now in force until the end of 2023, gave Putin the power to issue special waivers in certain cases for deals to go ahead.

(Reporting by Elena Fabrichnaya; Writing by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Bradley Perrett)