BUSINESS LIVE: Stocks plummet on Ukraine invasion; Lloyds profits miss

BUSINESS LIVE: Oil soars and stocks sink on Ukraine invasion; Lloyds profits hit £6.9bn; Rolls-Royce back to profit

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sent global stock markets into free fall, while Brent crude oil prices have rocketed above $100 a barrel for the first time since 2014.

Asian stock markets have closed between 2 and per cent lower, while the Russian index fell by more than 10 per cent, and futures markets indicate US and European shares will also open lower later today.

Britain’s largest high street bank Lloyds saw a jump in profits last year, but missed analyst consensus, as the lender laid out a fresh strategy under new CEO Charlie Nunn.

Lloyds reported pre-tax profits of £6.9billion for the calendar year, below the £7.2billion average of analyst forecasts and up from the £1.2billion profit in 2020.

Rolls-Royce expects to return to positive cash flow in 2022, the final year with Warren East at the helm, after it reported a better-than-expected reduction in its cash burn in 2021.

Outgoing East said the company had improved its financial and operational performance in 2021 and was now a more balanced business.

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‘Russian Donbass’: Russia’s latest invasion of Ukraine has driven Brent crude prices beyond $100 a barrel for the first time since 2014.