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U.S. stock futures fell Monday, but traded off earlier lows on the last day of February, after the Biden administration announced additional sanctions against Russia's central bank over Moscow's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. On Saturday, the U.S., European allies and Canada agreed to cut off key Russian banks from the interbank SWIFT messaging system. Wall Street mounted a strong rally Friday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average having its best day since November 2020. In a week of wild swings in the market, the Dow closed down slightly as the S&P 500 and Nasdaq finished higher.
Monday's new actions by the White House effectively prohibit Americans from doing any business with the Russian central bank as well as freezes its assets within the United States. The weekend's coordinated move to block Russian banks from SWIFT, which stands for the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, means they won't be able to communicate securely with banks beyond their borders.
Oil prices climbed Monday, but traded off earlier higher, after the SWIFT banking prohibition prompted fears that energy supplies could be indirectly affected. West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. benchmark, rose more than 3% to roughly $95 per barrel. Brent crude, the international benchmark, advanced more than 2% to around $100 per barrel. British energy giant BP announced Sunday it's offloading its 19.75% stake in Rosneft, a Russian-controlled oil company. Russia is a key oil and natural gas supplier, especially to Europe.
Facing mounting international sanctions, Russia's currency, the ruble, crashed 30% on Monday. The Russian central bank raised its key interest rate to 20% from 9.5% on Monday in an emergency move aimed at stemming the slide in the ruble. The Russian central bank and Finance Ministry jointly ordered Russian exporting companies to sell 80% of their foreign currency revenues. The Russian stock market was ordered closed Monday. The Russian stocks ETF tanked 23% in the premarket.
The economic fallout in Russia came as fighting in Ukraine showed no signs of abating and following Russian President Vladimir Putin putting nuclear forces put on high alert. Ukraine began talks near Belarus' border Monday with Russia in hopes of reaching a cease-fire. While Ukraine sent its defense minister and other top officials, Russia's delegation was led by Putin's advisor on culture, an unlikely envoy for ending the war and a sign of how Moscow views the talks.
— The Associated Press and Reuters 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.