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Tuesday, March 4

4th Mar - Ukraine Update

Live sources:
Ukraine – live updates – The Guardian
Crisis in UkraineThe Wall Street Journal
Crisis in UkraineThe New York Times
The World – The Washington Post
Live blog: Ukraine crisis – The World / The Financial Times
Live coverage – Reuters

What Could Cause a Ukraine Default?WSJ
Ukraine’s economic and political crisis may be heating up, but Kiev still has enough emergency cash reserves to cover its obligations for the next two months. But what would it take to push the country into default?

Another Thumbnail Historic Sketch: Russia and GeorgiaMarc to Market
Parallels have already been drawn between current events in Ukraine and the Russian-Georgian conflict of 2008. These parallels are unmistakable, yet the one big difference so far is that Ukraine has taken care not to give Russia any excuse to engage in a full-scale invasion to other parts of eastern Ukraine

Search on to find face-saving exit for PutinFT
Although the US and EU could hit Russian economic interests through sanctions, diplomats stressed on Monday that their priority was different: lowering tensions and offering Vladimir Putin a face-saving way out of the crisis.

Ukraine Has Only 4 Months Of Gas Stocks Without RussiaZH
Ukraine's reliance on Russia goes far beyond just energy. While Ukraine would like $3bn in IMF loans, that will not even cover interest and principal payments through June.

Russia Cites Yanukovych Request to Justify Ukraine InterventionBB
Russia justified its intervention in the Crimea as a legitimate response to a request from Ukraine’s ousted president amid threats posed by extremists, while Western leaders sought to keep the standoff from spiraling into war.

Gazprom Warns European Gas "Supply Disruptions" PossibleZH
Russia's Gazprom warned that not only could it cancel its "supply discount" as Ukraine's overdue payments reached $1.5 billion but that "simmering political tensions in Ukraine, that are aggravated by inadequate economic conditions, may cause disruptions of gas supplies to Europe."

UK prepares to rule out sanctions against Russia amid threat to global economyThe Telegraph
Downing Street document indicates British concerns over economic impact of Crimea stand-off as Russian aggression intensifies

Russia Takes It To Next LevelBCA Research
Ukraine should not have major implications for financial markets in the major countries, but much will depend on the response from NATO and, particularly, the U.S. However, Ukraine may degenerate into a Yugoslavia-style civil war regardless of any de-escalation of tension between Russia and the West.

Gideon Rachman: Russia is in no position to fight a new cold warFT

The New Ukraine: Inside Kiev's House of CardsSpiegel
In the days after Yanukovych's fall, the Ukrainian president's lavish lifestyle spurred outrage around the world. Now the provisional government is struggling to avoid the corruption and clientelism that plagued its predecessors.

Ukrainian bonds: back, but not from the brinkFT
Putin appeared to pull further back from armed conflict in a mid-day press conference, so the rally may have more legs. But yields are still at the brink.

Putin hits back at Ukrainian billionaireFT

Should Investors Start Loving Russia?WSJ

IAMA G8 leader contemplating invasion. Ask me anything.FT
Vladimir Putin’s gave his first official address on the Ukraine crisis on Tuesday.

Why Russian stocks are ridiculously cheapTradingFloor
Russian equities are extremely cheap at these levels, offering an attractive risk- reward ratio. We are betting that the Russia-Ukraine conflict will not escalate into a war and, as result, Russian equities should reflect a brighter outlook.

Not all ethnic Russians in Crimea have a political affinity with MoscowLSE
While a significant number of ethnic Russians do exhibit a Russian identity, there is evidence that this is not the case for many younger citizens who grew up after the fall of the Soviet Union.

Forget Sanctions; What Could Really Hurt Putin Is Investor BacklashBusinessweek
Western governments may not have to make good on their threat to punish Russia for invading Crimea. Investors are doing it for them.

Behind the West's Miscalculations in UkraineWSJ
U.S. Had Let Europe Take Lead in Guiding Westward Drift of Former Soviet Republic