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International Market Update
- European markets closed sharply lower Friday after Russian forces attacked and took control of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant. The pan-European Stoxx 600 closed down 3.6%, with banks leading the losses with a 6.7% drop, while all sectors and major bourses fell into negative territory. On a weekly basis, the benchmark index lost 7% and experienced its worst week since March 2020, the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
- U.S. stocks fell Friday despite a better-than-expected jobs report, as worrisome developments in Ukraine weighed on sentiment. Shares of United Airlines were another weak spot Friday, falling more than 9%. Shares of Delta Air Lines and American Airlines fell 5.6% and 7.1%, respectively. Major technology stocks also slipped, with Microsoft down 2% and Apple down 1.8%. Energy stocks rose along with oil prices.
- Asia-Pacific stocks slipped this morning as oil prices spiked and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war weighed on investor sentiment around the world. The Australian stock market was slightly lower, extending losses from the previous session. Among the major mining companies, BHP Group gained almost 1%, while Rio Tinto was up 0.4%.
In International news
PayPal suspends services in Russia over Ukraine war
PayPal said Saturday it is suspending its services in Russia, joining the ranks of companies pulling out of the country in response to the invasion of Ukraine. “Under the current circumstances, we are discontinuing PayPal services in Russia,” PayPal CEO Dan Schulman said in a letter to the Ukrainian government. The letter was posted on Twitter by Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, who has been pushing for companies including from Apple to Microsoft, to cut their ties with Russia. “So now it’s official: PayPal is stopping its services in Russia because of the aggression against Ukraine,” Fedorov tweeted Saturday. “Thank you @PayPal for your support!”
Visa and Mastercard stop Russia business
Visa and Mastercard have announced they will suspend all business in Russia in protest of the invasion of Ukraine. Major Russian banks, including state-backed Sberbank, have already downplayed the impact on consumers. Shoppers can continue to use Mastercard and Visa cards for purchases within Russia until they reach their expiration date. But cards issued abroad can no longer be used in stores or at ATMs in Russia. Customers also can no longer use their Russian Visa or Mastercard cards abroad or for international payments on the Internet. Together, the two companies control about 90% of credit and debit payments in the world outside China.