10 things before the opening bell

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10 THINGS BEFORE THE OPENING BELL

Happy Wednesday readers. There's a new development in Russia's precarious debt situation. Today we're breaking it down. 

Buckle up. 


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Vladimir Putin Russia

1. Once again, Russia narrowly avoided a default. Vladimir Putin's warring nation just missed a historic foreign debt default Tuesday as bondholders began receiving payments. 

An international clearinghouse processed the payment on Russia's 2022 and 2042 dollar-denominated bonds on Monday, a source told Insider. What's more, Bloomberg reported that three investors said they received their payments yesterday — a single day before Russia's 30-day grace period would have concluded. 

Market prices had suggested a default was all but certain in early April, but so far it hasn't happened.

But Russia's economy continues to take a beating. Energy giant BP said Tuesday that it has purged its European refineries of Russian oil, and expects to be rid of most long-term contracts with the Kremlin by 2023. 

Scores of Western brands have shunned business deals with Moscow, and BP's CEO noted that he expects 2 million barrels a day to disappear as existing sanctions kick in this month. 

Early Wednesday, the EU put forward proposals for a total ban on Russian oil imports, which included cutting out crude within six months. It comes after Germany had previously warned that a sweeping Russian oil embargo would damage Europe's economy.


oil refinery

In other news:

2. US futures rise early on Wednesday. Investors are bracing for the Fed's critical decision on interest rates. See the latest market moves

3. Earnings on deck: Allstate, Alamo Group, and Etsy Inc, all reporting.

4. Goldman Sachs said investors should target these specific stocks thanks to their above-average dividend growth. The firm's chief US Equity Strategist noted that these companies' returns get even stronger over time — see his 14 stock picks. 

5. Elon Musk told investors he could take Twitter public again in as little as three years. As per the WSJ, Musk — who is in the process of taking Twitter private in a $44 billion deal — has already told investors they could soon cash out through a public offering.

6. Bitcoin's sustained breakdown below $40,000 indicates a bearish long-term trend, according to Fairlead's Katie Stockton. The top analyst said there's room for further downside in the coming months — and warned of a 29% sell-off.

7. Billionaire trader Paul Tudor Jones said investors should focus on preserving capital right now instead of turning to the market. The hedge fund manager told CNBC that the "most important thing" investors can do now is save their money: "Clearly you don't want to own bonds or stocks."

8. FTX's Sam Bankman-Fried just hosted an exclusive crypto conference in the Bahamas. Passes cost upward of $3,000, and splashy figures like Bill Clinton and Tom Brady attended. Here's an inside look at the expensive multi-night affair. 

9. This 43-year-old averaged over $100,000 a month in income from her short-term-rental business last year. Myrline St. Hubert shared the types of units she started with, the areas she leased, and how she got started after suddenly losing her job.

JOLTS march 2022 job openings 2x1

10. Job openings hit a record high in March as businesses continue to struggle finding staffers. Wednesday's JOLTS data showed that job openings reached a record 11.5 million in March, above the forecast of 11 million. Here's why the labor shortage continues to barrel onward.


Keep up with the latest markets news throughout your day by checking out The Refresh from Insider, a dynamic audio news brief from the Insider newsroom. Listen here.


Curated by Phil Rosen in New York. (Feedback or tips? Email prosen@insider.com or tweet @philrosenn.) Edited by Hallam Bullock in London. 

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