Putin’s Next Takeover Target: Your Portfolio

Putin’s Next Takeover Target: Your Portfolio (Bloomberg)

In retaliation for the economic sanctions imposed on Russia, frequently bare-chested Russian President Vladimir Putin has threatened to escalate “economic warfare” against the West by making it increasingly difficult for foreign firms to invest in his country’s vast oil reserves. Should that come to pass, expect casualties of this economic war to include investors in companies like Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), which have huge contracts for rights to that oil. Said the often un-shirted Russian leader, “The Russian government has already proposed some retaliatory steps… I consider these not necessary. But if something like this continues [additional sanctions], then of course we will have to consider who’s working and how… in the key sectors of the Russian economy, including energy.” So while the Russian-Ukraine situation may not reheat the Cold War, it could put a chill on increased investment profits for investors in XOM and RDSA.