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The stock market moved sharply lower on Monday after oil prices briefly hit more than $130 per barrel overnight—the highest level since July 2008—as the escalating conflict between Russia and Ukraine continued to weigh on investors, who turned to safe-haven assets like gold .


Stocks fell on Monday after ending last week on a down note: The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 2.4%, around 800 points, while the S&P 500 lost 3% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite 3.6%.

Markets were under pressure yet again as heavy fighting continued in Ukraine, with planned civilian evacuations from several cities canceled over the weekend after Russia reportedly violated a cease-fire agreement.

Oil prices, which have skyrocketed in recent weeks, jumped overnight after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that the US and its allies are considering a ban on Russian oil and natural gas imports in response to the country’s actions in Ukraine.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate now sits at $120 per barrel (after hitting $130 overnight), while global benchmark Brent crude is trading at around $124 per barrel (after briefly rising to $139 per barrel).

Investors are now growing increasingly concerned by surging energy prices, with experts warning that could result in higher inflation and potentially slower economic growth.

Gold prices crossed $2,000 per ounce for the first time in over a year, meanwhile, as investors looked for safe-haven assets after Russian President Vladimir Putin pledged to continue his invasion unless Ukraine fully surrendered and met Russia’s original demands.