**__ Diplomatt’s Daily Digest – February 28, 2022__**
Good morning and happy Monday, everyone! U.S. stock futures moved lower early Monday but were off their morning lows as Russian and Ukrainian officials gathered to discuss a potential end to the hostilities between the two sides. The moves come amid turmoil over the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. In the most recent financial developments, the Central Bank of Russia more than doubled its key interest rate, to 20% from 9.5% in reaction to a currency move that saw the ruble tumble nearly 16% against the U.S. dollar. Over the weekend, the U.S. joined allies in Europe and Canada to bar key Russian banks from the interbank messaging system, SWIFT. The system connects more than 11,000 banks and financial institutions in 200 countries and territories. Facing a Russian onslaught, Ukrainian forces have held key cities, including the capital of Kyiv. At the same time, Ukrainian officials have arrived near the border for talks with Russian officials. Russian President Vladimir Putin put his country’s nuclear deterrence forces on high alert Sunday amid a growing global backlash against the invasion. Traders will be watching for any signs of resolution on the Russian crisis (negotiated peace or signs of a near-term victory for either side) or signs tensions could be worsening, raising the chance of a world war involving NATO members, As news trickles out supporting either thesis, expect daily stock market action to remain volatile.
Quote of the week: “War may sometimes be a necessary evil. But no matter how necessary, it is always an evil, never a good.” -Jimmy Carter.
• The Russian ruble dived around 29% against the dollar on Monday morning in an all-time low as markets assessed the impact of sanctions on Russia amid a growing backlash against the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine.
• The European Union announced new actions it planned to take in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, including that the union would fund the delivery of weapons to the besieged nation for the first time.
• A growing number of countries announced they’re joining a string of nations in closing their airspace to Russian aircraft after Moscow began its invasion of Ukraine.
• British energy giant B.P. announced it was offloading its 19.75% stake in Rosneft, a Russian-controlled oil company.
• Toyota said it would suspend all Japan factory operations on Tuesday, losing around 13,000 cars after a suspected cyber attack hit a company supplying plastic parts and electronic components.
• U.S.-listed Chinese electric car company Nio is set to offer its shares for trading in Hong Kong on March 10.
• Graphics firm Nvidia has been “completely compromised” by a potential cyber attack.
• A recent report from Germany suggests that Tesla Gigafactory Berlin’s final approval is expected to be released at the end of this week.
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