Stocks extend their rout as the war in Ukraine and its economic fallout escalate.

“We are now in very active discussions with our European partners on banning the import of Russian oil into our countries while, of cours...


“We are now in very active discussions with our European partners on banning the import of Russian oil into our countries while, of course, at the same time maintaining a stable global supply of oil,” Mr. Blinken on “Meet the Press” on NBC.

A sharp drop in oil and natural gas supplies from Russia would create major problems for both industrial users and consumers. Cutting Russian oil would force many refineries that normally process it to find other sources.

Although oil is a relatively flexible commodity, there are many grades of crude and a refiner cannot always substitute one for another. Washington sanctions against Venezuelan crude, for example, led refiners in the United States to buy more Russian oil as a substitute, thereby increasing import levels. Saturday, ShellEurope’s largest oil company, said it bought Russian crude oil because supplies from “alternative sources would not have arrived in time to avoid market supply disruptions”.

Investors were already worried about inflation, which was the highest in decades in the United States and Europe after the pandemic shuttered factories and left supply chains rumbling.

Economists expect the consumer price index on Thursday to show that prices in the United States rose 7.9% in the year to February. And this reading was taken before the effects of the war really started to be felt. Gas pricesfor example, on Monday hit their highest level in the United States since 2008: $4.06 per gallon, according to AAAup 45 cents from a week ago.

Central banks have started to take aggressive steps to raise interest rates as they shift their focus from supporting economic growth to fighting inflation. The end of easy money and the lure of higher rates – which make riskier investments less appealing – had already sent stocks plummeting even before the Russian invasion.

But the financial fallout from the war is hitting Europe the hardest. Natural gas is less flexible than oil and Europe is much more dependent on it as a fuel. Natural gas prices in Europe were already several times higher than they were a year ago and soared further, reaching 345 euros per megawatt hour on Monday before falling back to 215 euros, a gain of 11.7 %.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Stocks extend their rout as the war in Ukraine and its economic fallout escalate.
Stocks extend their rout as the war in Ukraine and its economic fallout escalate.
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