Here are the most important news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:
- Futures are flat after S&P 500's worst day in nearly 17 months
- WTI jumps as U.S. may ban Russian energy; nickel trading halted
- Shell apologizes for buying a shipment of Russian oil
- Xi urges Russian restraint; Ukrainian refugees hit 2 million
- Apple holds its spring launch event Tuesday
1. Futures are flat after S&P 500's worst day in nearly 17 months
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U.S. stock futures were little changed Tuesday, one day after a broad market slide as concerns about oil supply due to Russia's war with Ukraine spiked crude prices to near 14-year highs.
- The S&P 500 fell deeper into a correction, down nearly 3%, in its worst single-day performance since October 2020.
- The Nasdaq dropped 3.6% into a bear market, down 20% from its November record highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost almost 2.4%, falling into a correction, down more than 10% from its January record highs.
- Investors sold bonds on inflation fears Monday and that continued Tuesday, pushing the 10-year Treasury yield inversely higher to around 1.85%.
2. WTI crude jumps again as U.S. may ban Russian energy
West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. oil benchmark, rose more than 5% to around $125 per barrel Tuesday, after settling Monday at its highest level since September 2008. WTI topped $130 on Sunday, a high back to July 2008. The U.S. was set to ban Russian oil, without European participation, as soon as Tuesday, NBC News reports. Europe relies heavily on Russian energy production.
The London Metal Exchange halted nickel trading Tuesday after prices quickly doubled to a record high above $100,000 per metric ton, fueled by a race to cover short positions after Western sanctions threatened supply from Russia. Nickel prices have quadrupled over the past week on fears of further curbs on supply. Russia provides about 10% of the world's nickel, which is used in stainless steel production and batteries.
3. Shell apologizes for buying a shipment of Russian oil
Shell on Tuesday apologized for a buying heavily discounted shipment of Russian oil and announced plans to halt involvement in all Russian hydrocarbons. The London-based energy giant faced heavy criticism for the purchase, including from Ukraine's foreign minister, who has urged global companies to cut all business ties with Russia. Other firms, including BP and Exxon have announced plans to exit their multibillion-dollar Russian energy interests.
4. Xi urges Russian restraint; Ukrainian refugees hit 2 million
Chinese President Xi Jinping called for "maximum restraint" in Ukraine, saying Beijing is "pained to see the flames of war reignited in Europe." That's according to Chinese state media. Xi's comments, in a virtual meeting with French and German leaders, were thought to be his strongest yet against Russia, a key economic and strategic ally of China.
Evacuations from embattled Ukrainian cities along safe corridors began Tuesday. U.N. officials said the exodus of refugees from Russia's invasion reached 2 million. Previous attempts to lead civilians to safety have crumbled with renewed attacks. Russian troops have made significant advances in southern Ukraine but stalled in some other regions.
5. Apple holds its Spring launch event Tuesday
Apple is holding its first launch event of the year Tuesday. It's expected to announce a new iPhone, an iPad and possibly some fresh Macs. Apple's spring device launches are less important to the company than its traditional fall events, which reveal new iPhone models ahead of the holiday shopping season. Tuesday's event follows a similar spring launch last year, when Apple announced a new iPad Pro, a redesigned iMac desktop computer and AirTags.
— Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report. Sign up now for the CNBC Investing Club to follow Jim Cramer's every stock move. Follow the broader market action like a pro on CNBC Pro.