Europe and Russia Divided Over Crimea

As the uneasy standoff over Ukraine continues into another week, risks linger that a worsening conflict could damage the European economy.
Russia remains intent on annexing Crimea, a part of Ukraine that is home to many Russian speakers and a key military base.

Western diplomats are racing to contain the geopolitical fallout, threatening sanctions on Moscow and gathering funds needed to shore up Ukraine’s finances. Yet close trade and investment ties between Russia and Europe are complicating the situation.
Here is where things stand on Ukraine’s financial crisis, sanctions, and what’s at stake for the economy.
Ukraine still needs that bailout: The European Union says it will offer Ukraine at least $15 billion (€11 billion) in aid. The U.S. government has also stepped in to help, offering $1 billion in loan guarantees.
The money can’t come soon enough. Ukrainian leaders said last month the country needs $35 billion in aid, funds that will go to pay creditors like Gazprom, the Russian energy firm that is owed more than $2 billion.
IMF officials are currently in Ukraine on a fact-finding mission, which they said Friday is “progressing well.”

via CNN

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza