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Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Stock futures sink, oil spikes after Putin launches invasion of Ukraine

Stock futures sank and oil prices spiked Wednesday night after Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinAustralia, Canada, Japan impose sanctions on Russia over Ukraine crisis Cheney: Trump’s ‘adulation’ of Putin ‘aids our enemies’ Defense & National Security: US, allies hit Russia with sanctions MORE announced a military operation in Ukraine.

Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down more than 735 points shortly after 11 p.m. Wednesday, a decline of 2.2 percent. S&P 500 futures were down 2.3 percent, and futures tied to the Nasdaq composite were down 2.8 percent.

Stock market futures cratered and prices for U.S. and international oil shot up as investors braced for war between Russia and Ukraine to disrupt the global energy supply.

The price of a barrel of West Texas Intermediate Crude, the baseline for U.S. oil prices, was up $3.40 on the day to $95.52. Intercontinental Exchange Brent crude oil, the international benchmark, reached $100 per gallon.

Government officials, economists and financial experts have warned for weeks that a major war in Europe would likely shake the global economy. While Russia’s economic output is relatively small compared to its geopolitical influence, it produces a significant amount of the world’s supply of oil, natural gas and key minerals. 

The escalation of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is certain draw another round of financial penalties from the U.S., European Union and other western allies, likely targeting the Russian energy sector. Prices for gasoline and natural gas are expected to rise even further as both the U.S. and Europe depend more on domestic supply and other friendly sources of energy.

“As I said last week, defending freedom will have costs for us as well and here at home,” President BidenJoe BidenPentagon approves request for National Guard deployment ahead of DC trucker convoy Lee Harris discusses the past of the Development Finance Corporation’s new CEO Defense & National Security: US, allies hit Russia with sanctions MORE said in a speech on Tuesday, preparing Americans for the potential sticker shock of the conflict.

“We need to be honest about that. But as we do this, I’m going to take robust action to make sure the pain of our sanctions is targeted at the Russian economy, not ours.”

White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden has done interviews with multiple Supreme Court contenders Psaki confirms Biden-Putin meeting off the table Watch live: White House holds press briefing amid escalating tensions in Ukraine MORE said Wednesday a release of oil from the strategic petroleum reserve was “certainly on the table.” Tapping the reserve could help reduce some pressure on gasoline and other energy prices.

The economic fallout could also weigh on the stock market, which has fallen steadily throughout 2022 amid rising tensions in Europe.

The Dow closed Wednesday with a loss of 1.4 percent, ending in the red for the fifth consecutive day of trading. The Nasdaq composite closed with a loss of 2.6 percent, and the S&P 500 fell 1.8 percent before the closing bell.

Updated at 11:22 p.m.

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