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5 things to know before the stock market opens Friday

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1. Futures jump on hopes of progress in Russia-Ukraine talks

Traders at the NYSE, March 8, 2022.
Source: NYSE

Dow futures rose roughly 300 points, or nearly 1%, Friday. S&P and Nasdaq futures jumped roughly 1% and 1.4%, respectively, on hopes of progress in Russia-Ukraine ceasefire talks. The 10-year Treasury yield was holding around 2%. U.S. oil prices trimmed early gains to around $107 per barrel. Shortly before 6:30 a.m. ET, Reuters sent a brief bulletin quoting Russian President Vladimir Putin saying there are “certain positive developments” in the talks. As of Thursday’s lower close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq were all heading for another losing week. West Texas Intermediate crude, the American oil benchmark, was tracking to snap a two-week winning streak.

2. Russia widens military Ukraine offensive, troops approach Kyiv

Firefighters spray water on a destroyed shoe factory following an airstrike in Dnipro on March 11, 2022.
Emre Caylak | AFP | Getty Images

As investors try to gauge the veracity of Putin’s reported comments, Russia widened its military offensive in Ukraine on Friday, striking near airports in the west of the country for the first time. New satellite images appear to show that a large Russian convoy approaching Kyiv has been redeployed to towns and forests outside the city, potentially signaling a renewed push to bear down on the Ukrainian capital. There’s also mounting outrage after a deadly airstrike hit a maternity hospital in the key Ukrainian port city of Mariupol.

3. U.S., allies may revoke Russia’s most favored trading status

U.S. President Joe Biden holds a virtual meeting with business leaders and state governors to discuss supply chain problems, particularly addressing semiconductor chips, on the White House campus in Washington, March 9, 2022.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

With the invasion now in its third week, the U.S. and its allies prepared to step up their efforts to isolate and sanction Russia. According to media reports, President Joe Biden on Friday, along with the European Union and the G-7, will move to revoke Russia’s most favored trading status. Stripping Russia of its favored nation status paves the way for the United States and its allies to impose tariffs on a wide range of Russian goods. Biden on Tuesday imposed a ban on Russian energy imports.

4. Friday marks 2 years since Covid was declared a pandemic

Lab technicians test wastewater samples from around the United States for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the Biobot Analytics, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, February 22, 2022.
Allison Dinner | Reuters

Friday marks two years since Covid was declared a pandemic on March 11, 2020. Since the novel coronavirus was found in China in 2019, there have been more than 450 million global infections and over 6 million deaths, with more than 15% of each in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins University data. Though the raging wave of omicron cases has subsided and more than 250 million people in the U.S. have received at least one dose of Covid vaccine, according to the CDC, health officials are warning Americans not to get complacent.

5. Ford, PG&E partner on electric F-150 powering homes, grid

The all-electric Ford F-150 Lightning truck during an augmented reality presentation at the Motor Bella Auto Show in Pontiac, Michigan, on Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021.
Emily Elconin | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Ford will collaborate with Pacific Gas and Electric Co. in California to evaluate the bidirectional charging capabilities of the electric F-150 Lightning to power homes and return energy to the power grid. Ford CEO Jim Farley and PG&E CEO Patti Poppe announced the plans Thursday night at the CERAWeek energy conference in Texas. The announcement comes two days after Poppe announced a pilot program with General Motors to make its electric vehicles capable of powering a home in the event of a power outage or grid failure.

— CNBC reporters Maggie Fitzgerald, Samantha Subin, Hannah Miao, Vicky McKeever, Holly Ellyatt and Michael Wayland contributed to this report. So did The Associated Press and Reuters.

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