World stocks fell after the West ramped up sanctions
World stocks declined on the last day of February after the West ramped up sanctions against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, including blocking Russian banks from the SWIFT global payments system.
Russia’s central bank is trying to cope with problems. The central bank hiked its key interest rate to 20% from 9.5%. It also introduced some capital controls to bolster the rouble and tackle inflation. Furthermore, authorities ordered exporting companies to sell 80% of their foreign revenues as the Russian currency slid to 32% before recouping some losses. The European arm of Sberbank is also struggling to deal with issues.
The fallout from tougher sanctions also affected financial markets outside Russia. European stocks declined on Monday.
European banks sustained serious losses, with those most exposed to Russia, UniCredit, Societe Generale, and Raiffeisen Bank, falling between 9.5% and 14%.
The wider eurozone index of 22 major banks dropped 5.7%. However, the pan-regional STOXX 600 stock index closed down a scant 0.09% as sentiment improved at its close.
U.S. stocks on Monday
U.S. stocks fell on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.49%, and the S&P 500 fell 0.25%. The Nasdaq Composite recovered, adding 0.41%, as investors bet the Federal Reserve will be less aggressive hiking interest rates.
According to analysts, markets are likely to remain choppy in the near term. The global economy faces economic as well as financial turmoil in the Russian Federation, the world’s 11th largest economy.
As uncertainty continued to grip markets, investors focused on the dollar, Swiss franc, and Japanese yen.
The euro declined 0.48% to $1.1213, while the yen gained 0.55% to 114.92 per dollar. The Russian rouble continued its journey to the bottom. It declined to 101.40, down about 20% on the day.
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