Risk meme Putin Biden

Throughout the security meeting with Putin, he was repeatedly urged by nearly all of his advisors and cabinets to recognize Donbas.

The security cabinet argued that Ukraine had no interest in implementing the Minsk accord.

It very much sounds like Putin has made up his mind. He likely wants to make the announcement live on Russian TV in a national address. Based on what we heard today it's a 99% likelihood he recognizes Luhansk and Donetsk.

The other tell is that the meeting was pre-recorded. The defense minister's watch showed it was three hours earlier. So the release of this meeting was likely part of setting the stage for the announcement.

The big question is: What happens now? Recognizing these breakaway republics as independent isn't a big surprise but it doesn't mean war with Ukraine and certainly doesn't mean attacking and surrounding Kiev. So the question really is: How does Ukraine respond?

Crude oil is up $1.05 to $92.12 and Russian markets are down double digits.