Journal De Bruxelles - Oil soars, ruble dives on fallout from Russia sanctions

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Oil soars, ruble dives on fallout from Russia sanctions
Oil soars, ruble dives on fallout from Russia sanctions

Oil soars, ruble dives on fallout from Russia sanctions

Oil prices surged Monday while the ruble collapsed and global stocks mostly retreated after world powers imposed new sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

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Western powers added to the growing litany of penalties on Moscow, with the United States and Canada banning all transactions with Russia's central bank and the European Union adding more close allies of President Vladimir Putin to its sanctions blacklist.

Russian President Vladimir Putin laid out conditions for ending his invasion of Ukraine in a phone call with French President Emmanuel Macron, while the United Nations General Assembly began a special emergency session to discuss whether to condemn Russia's invasion of its neighbor.

Brent crude again topped $100 per barrel as oil prices reached highs not seen since 2014.

The news, alongside sharp gains for aluminium, nickel, corn and wheat -- commodities that Russia and Ukraine are major suppliers of -- sparked renewed concern over rampant inflation.

"Russia's energy supplies are very much at risk, either due to being withheld by Russia as a weapon or swiped off the market due to sanctions," Louise Dickson, senior oil market analyst at Rystad Energy, said in a note.

Traders will closely watch a meeting this week of OPEC and other major oil producers led by Russia, where they will discuss output plans.

The Russian ruble crashed to a record low as sanctions imposed by the West over the weekend had an immediate impact in Moscow, forcing the central bank to more than double its key interest rate to 20 percent.

Putin also announced emergency measures intended to prop up the ruble, including banning residents from transferring money abroad.

- Banking shares slump -

Wall Street stocks began the day firmly in the red, and though they staged a partial recovery, the Dow and S&P 500 had retreated by the close while the Nasdaq scored modest gains.

"It is nearly impossible to be aggressively bullish given the geopolitical uncertainties and continued upward pressures with inflation," said Oanda's Edward Moya.

European stocks also closed in the red with London losing 0.4 percent, while Frankfurt and Paris shed 0.7 percent and 1.4 percent respectively.

The hardest-hit stocks included giant European banks, which tanked in the wake of the latest measures on Russia.

In Paris, Societe Generale slumped 10.4 percent, BNP Paribas shed 8.2 percent and Credit Agricole lost 5.5 percent.

In Frankfurt, Deutsche Bank was the biggest loser with a drop of 8.5 percent.

The European subsidiary of Russia's state-owned Sberbank is meanwhile facing bankruptcy in the wake of the sanctions, the European Central Bank said on Monday.

Frightened customers of Sberbank branches outside Russia were seen lining up to withdraw cash on Monday.

London-listed shares in Russian metal giants Polymetal and Evraz took another battering, collapsing by 52 percent and 27 percent respectively at one point.

Monday also saw British energy giant BP dive almost 6.0 percent after deciding to exit Russia.

- Key figures around 2030 GMT -

Brent North Sea crude: UP 3.1 percent at $100.99 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: UP 4.5 percent at $95.72 per barrel

New York - Dow: DOWN 0.5 percent at 33,892.60 (close)

New York - S&P 500: DOWN 0.2 percent at 4,373.94 (close)

New York - Nasdaq: UP 0.4 percent at 13,751.40 (close)

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.4 percent at 7,458.25 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX: DOWN 0.7 percent at 14,461.02 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: DOWN 1.4 percent at 6,658.83 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 1.2 percent at 3,924.23 (close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.2 percent at 26,526.82 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: DOWN 0.2 percent at 22,713.02 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.3 percent at 3,462.31 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.1220 from $1.1268 late Friday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3418 from $1.3409

Euro/pound: DOWN at 83.59 pence from 84.03 pence

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 114.93 yen from 115.55 yen