Putin says Europe cannot survive without Russian gas

ggood morning.

Russian authorities are reportedly preparing a phased approach to roll back capital controls that have supported markets since the start of the war.

Discussions this week revolved around a possible extension of the deadline for exporters to convert their foreign income into rubles, and a lowering of the threshold below 80 pc.

The move would raise questions about the effectiveness of Western sanctions, designed to bring Russia’s economy to its knees.

Calls are mounting for countries to target major oil and gas imports from Russia to help cut off a crucial revenue stream, but Europe is so far divided on the issue.

5 things to start your day

1) National Grid could pay power stations to shut down for Queen’s Jubilee Energy demand set to fall as households head to street celebrations

2) How the Bank of England lost control of inflation Despite warnings of a looming cost of living crisis more than a year ago, pricing officials in Threadneedle Street have done nothing

3) £60,000 isn’t enough for a job in the Treasury’s new northern outpost Ex-government adviser says salary for Darlington-based labor market policy role too low

4) Britain needs oil and gas, Kwarteng tells Extinction Rebellion protesters How Extinction Rebellion missed the mark with their attack on the City

5) Rail operator faces strike over ‘transparent’ uniforms Avanti embroiled in row with RMT after giving workers ‘fragile new blouses and shirts’

What happened overnight

Asian stocks followed Wall Street higher on Thursday.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside of Japan rose 0.4% at the start of Asian trading, buoyed by a 0.5% gain in resource-rich Australian stocks and a rise of 0.6% of mainland China blue chip stocks. Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.2pc.

South Korean stocks were an outlier on Thursday. The KOSPI index fell 0.4% as the central bank raised its benchmark rate to the highest since August 2019 in an unexpected move as it seeks to quell soaring inflation.

Asian markets including Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia are on Easter Friday holiday, as are major European and US markets.

coming today

  • Business : THG (annual results); Ashmore Group, DiscoverIE Group, Dunelm, Hays, Mediclinic International, Ninety One (commercial statement)
  • Economy: ECB decision on interest rates (EU)retail (WE)unemployment benefit claims (WE)Bank of England Credit Conditions Survey (UK)Michigan Consumer Confidence Index (WE)

Mary I. Bruner