Monday newspaper round-up: Russian debts, BrewDog, Virgin Atlantic

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A Russian default on its debts after western sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine is no longer “improbable”, but would not trigger a global financial crisis, the head of the International Monetary Fund said on Sunday. The Washington-based fund’s managing director, Kristalina Georgieva, said the sanctions imposed by the United States and other nations were already having a “severe” impact on the Russian economy and would trigger a deep recession there this year. The war in Ukraine will also drive up food and energy prices, leading to hunger in Africa, she added. – Guardian
The boss of BrewDog, James Watt, hired private investigators to obtain information about people whom he believed were taking part in a smear campaign against him and repeatedly accused one woman of being involved until she blocked him on social media. According to multiple sources and evidence seen by the Guardian, private investigators who said they were working for Watt approached people to gather evidence about those who he appeared to believe had maligned him. – Guardian

Virgin Atlantic will reignite its decades-long dogfight with British Airways after a fortuitous bet that oil prices would rocket paid off following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. In a departure from previous years, Sir Richard Branson’s airline has locked in fuel prices for 2022 at $90 a barrel, saving the carrier tens of millions of pounds, The Telegraph can disclose. – Telegraph

The government is exploring whether old coal-fired power stations that are due to close this year could be kept open to ease the energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Officials have approached EDF to find out if its West Burton A plant in Nottinghamshire could continue generating beyond its planned September closure date, The Times can reveal. – The Times

Companies face fresh pressure to pull out of Russia after Rishi Sunak told them to “think very carefully” about investments there. The chancellor warned yesterday that there was “no case for new investment in Russia”. He also welcomed announcements by businesses including BP and Shell that they were offloading Russian assets. Sunak said: “The government supports further signals of intent.” His intervention escalates government efforts to urge companies to sever links with Russia. – The Times

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