U.S. crude briefly tops $130 a barrel on talk of Russia oil ban. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Sunday the U.S. was considering an embargo of Russian oil imports in coordination with European and NATO allies in response to Moscow’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. That said, there has already been an implicit ban of Russian crude, with prospective buyers shunning crude out of Russia.
Saudi Arabia hikes oil prices for all regions after the crude oil prices soared. Saudi Arabia's state oil producer Aramco raised the official selling price, or OSP, of its flagship Arab Light crude shipments to Asia, to $4.95 a barrel above the benchmark it uses. Aramco hiked all prices for US customers by $1, while those for Northwest Europe rose between $1.20 and $2.10. Read more here.
Gold hits $2,000 as safe havens sought amid escalating Ukraine war. The precious metal was reacting to increased geopolitical tensions as Russian President Vladimir Putin vowed to press ahead with his invasion of Ukraine unless Kyiv surrenders. Additionally, gold appears to be following oil prices today, so if oil corrects lower again, the fast-money longs are likely to quickly retreat.
Renewable energy stocks are outperforming. The rapid surge in oil and gas prices prompted by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine makes the case for alternative energy sources more compelling. The move higher in global natural gas and power prices is potentially a longer-term catalyst for the acceleration of the development of renewable energy capacity globally across a variety of technologies including solar, wind, and green hydrogen.
Travel rebound faces threat from jet fuel price surge. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and concerns around global fuel supplies have driven jet fuel prices up to the highest level in more than 13 years. Some analysts expect airlines to trim first-quarter profit and revenue estimates this month. Airlines are limited in how much they can raise fares as they chase passengers returning to the skies. Read more here.
Amazon acquires Veeqo. By acquiring the startup, Amazon could potentially lure sellers away from other third-party logistics providers like Shopify, UPS, and FedEx by integrating more robust tools into its MCF program. Veeqo is a company that makes tools to help online businesses sell products on and off Amazon. Amazon quietly acquired the company last November, but only publicized the acquisition this Monday.
WHAT TO WATCH
Aston Martin inks deal to develop EV batteries with UK start-up Britishvolt. The carmaker is gearing up to launch a battery-electric vehicle in 2025. According to the business, all of its new product lines will offer the option of an electrified powertrain by the year 2026. Deliveries of a plug-in hybrid, the Valhalla, will start in 2024 and it wants its core portfolio to be fully electrified by 2030.
Intel's Mobileye files for U.S. IPO. Intel Corp. said its Mobileye self-driving car business has filed confidentially for an initial public offering. In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Intel said the number of shares offered and the price hasn’t been determined yet and that the IPO will occur after the SEC completes its review process. Read more here.
Swiss city to make Bitcoin and Tether 'De Facto' legal tender. Aiming to become Europe's Bitcoin capital, Lugano, Switzerland, has formed a partnership with stablecoin issuer Tether to establish bitcoin, Tether, and Lugano's own LVGA Points token as essentially legal tender in the city. In addition to allowing crypto for taxes, they're aiming to have all of their businesses seamlessly use crypto for everyday transactions.
High chance of recession if the war drags on. If NATO brings in fighter jets and Russia takes that as an act of war, this will drag on for months and perhaps years. If the war drags, the cycle would be: 1) oil price continues to go up; 2) wheat continues to go up; 3) fertilizer up and 4) food/gas/shipping all go up. There's a high chance of significant recession and also job losses due to more automation. Read more here.