What is the default bid amount?

The minimum CPC in Yandex.Direct is .3 rubles.

Why was a bid higher than the minimum CPC set when creating the ad?

You may change the default bid and assign the price you are willing to pay starting from RUR 0.3 .

Why is the bid needed for guaranteed placement very high, even though there is no competition?

The bid takes into account competition across all the display regions you selected. While you might not see your competitors in one region, they may be present in the other regions. Prices in the interface are set in such a way so as place your ad in the positions you've set, in all the regions that correspond to your geotargeting settings.

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