European stocks tumbled in the opening minutes of trading on Thursday. The FTSE 100 fell 2.5% in London, while France’s CAC 40 dropped 4% and Germany’s DAX 30 shed 4%. Russian stocks crashed, with the country’s main index dropping 45%.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index (HSI) dropped 3.2%, its biggest daily loss in five months. Korea’s Kospi fell 2.6%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 (N225) lost 1.8%. China’s Shanghai Composite moved 1.7% lower.
US stocks futures also tumbled. Dow futures were down 660 points, or 2%. S&P 500 and Nasdaq futures were down 2% and 2.5% respectively.
The pain spread beyond stocks. The Russian ruble briefly crashed about 10% to a record low of 90 against the US dollar.
Brent crude, the world benchmark, climbed above $100 a barrel for the first time since 2014. US crude jumped 5.4% to $97.05 a barrel.
The turbulence comes after Putin announced a military operation and CNN teams in Ukraine reported explosions.