Monday 28th February 2022

The rapid change in the Ukraine situation has meant any bulletin becomes out of date as soon as it is written.

Indeed this was the case, as we started to write this yesterday, as the West tightened sanctions and in particular agreeing to cut off Russian banks from the interbank messaging system SWIFT. This system connects more than 11,000 banks and financial institutions in over 200 countries. The initial impact is on the Russian currency the Rouble which has fallen in value against the dollar by nearly 30% this morning. This could mean Russia's central Bank having to sell some of it's substantial gold reserves and an aggressive increase in it's interest rates.

This has led to large queues in Russia at cash point machines as people try to realise their money as it goes into free fall. Indeed isolating Russia from the rest of the world seems to us the only way for the world to be free of Putin, that enough of the ordinary people of Russia revolt to oust him.

Stock markets didn't fall as much as you'd have expected last week with our own FTSE100 down 0.5%, the US DOW 1.9% and the German Dax 3.6%. This was mainly due to the lack of severity of the sanctions and now being significantly stepped up means we can expect more volatility in markets this week.

As it changes so rapidly we'd like to invite you to hear from Jonathan Marriott, LGT Vestra's Chief Investment Officer. Who is hosting a Webinar tomorrow at 10.30 a.m. so it will be up to date. To register please click on the link below:

Register in advance:

You'll have all read of individual and collective actions to bring whatever pressure there is to bear on Russia and like everyone we also feel for the people of Ukraine and hope that the more severe reaction and isolation of Russia does bring a quick end to their pain and suffering.