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Todays Big Deal: The U.S. and its allies are stepping up their campaign to constrain the Russian economy. Well also look at who stands to benefit from rising oil prices and the fallout of the government funding deal. 

But first, Instagram is going out in Russia. 


For The Hill, were Sylvan Lane, Aris Folley and Karl Evers-Hillstrom.  Reach us at [email protected] or @SylvanLane, [email protected] or @ArisFolley and [email protected] or @KarlMEvers.

Lets get to it. 

US, allies to revoke Russia’s trade status  

President BidenJoe BidenBiden expected to call for nixing normal trade relations with Russia Senate averts shutdown, passes .6B in Ukraine aidGOP senators urge Biden to expedite transfer of airpower, air defense systems to Ukraine MORE announced Friday that the United States and other Group of Seven (G-7) nations would move to revoke the most favored nation trade status for Russia as part of a new tranche of penalties in response to Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinHogan, Maryland legislative leaders agree to halt state gas tax for 30 daysOvernight Defense & National Security Senators grill Biden officials on UkraineBiden warns Democrats it will be a ‘sad two years’ if Republicans take control of CongressMOREs invasion of Ukraine. 

In remarks from the White House, Biden said the coordinated move would deal another crushing blow to the Russian economy.” 

  • The decision will open the door to the U.S. and other countries imposing higher tariffs on Russian goods, which will further hamper the Russian economy.   

The free world is coming together to confront Putin. Our two parties here at home are leading the way, Biden said.    

And with that bipartisan cooperation, Im looking forward to signing into law the bill revoking PNTR, Biden said, referring to the status of permanent normal trade relations.   

Morgan Chalfant has more here. 


Here’s who stands to win from high gas prices 

Not everyone is suffering from high gas prices that have spiked further with Russias invasion of Ukraine and the international sanctions imposed on Moscow. 

Some players, including the U.S. oil producers, stand to gain financially. And countries such as Saudi Arabia stand to gain both monetarily and politically. 

  • Companies that drill for oil: As oil prices rise, producers can get more money for their product. Oil drillers and producers its a grand slam for them right now, said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, a gasoline price tracking website. 
  • Shale producers: Shale oil producers are particularly well-suited to benefit from high gas prices given the relatively quick turnaround for extracting this type of oil.  
  • Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates could benefit from the price spike if they decide to put more oil on the market. 
  • Iran if it can get a nuclear deal across the finish line: If Iran could get a nuclear deal with the U.S. and other nations done, it may be able to get its barrels on the market.  

The Hills Zack Budryk and Rachel Frazin explain here. 


Senate finance chair proposes stripping Russian oligarchs’ ‘tax goodies’ 

A new proposal by Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenBiden expected to call for nixing normal trade relations with Russia IRS budget boosted as agency struggles against tax return backlogGraham signals he’s a likely ‘no’ on Biden SCOTUS pickMORE (D-Ore.) seeks to eliminate tax benefits for sanctioned Russians doing business in the U.S., as well as to nix U.S. tax credits and deductions for taxes paid to Russia. 

Russian oligarchs and companies supporting [Russian President Vladimir] Putin shouldnt be getting tax breaks in the United States, Wyden said in a statement. We should take away every special tax benefit for all sanctioned individuals, as well as give [Treasury Secretary Janet] Yellen the authority to identify other individuals, companies, or governments supporting the invasion that should lose their tax goodies. 

The Hills Tobias Burns breaks it down here. 


Congress overrides DC voters, keeps sales of marijuana illegal in District  

A GOP-backed ban on weed sales in Washington, D.C., was preserved in a sprawling government funding bill passed by Congress on Thursday, despite opposition from advocates who say the provision overrides the will of the Districts residents years after they voted to legalize marijuana. 

The Harris Rider, a provision barring the legalization of recreational marijuana sales in the nations capital named after its chief proponent, Rep. Andy HarrisAndrew (Andy) Peter HarrisUkraine president, US lawmakers huddle amid tensions with RussiaCongress to take up marijuana reform this springGreene, GOP colleagues call for firing of DC Corrections official who ‘despises’ Trump and supportersMORE (R-Md.), sailed through the Senate late Thursday, a day after passing the House, as part of a larger $1.5 trillion spending omnibus package to fund the government through fiscal year 2022. 

Congressional Democrats had pushed to do away with the provision, opting not to include the rider in the government funding bills unveiled by appropriators in both chambers last year. But negotiators say the rider was reinstalled in appropriations after sharp opposition from Republicans.  

Republicans were the ones who insisted. They were ready to shut down the government, said Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenStrained US-India relations under pressure over RussiaTrump says he could have ousted ‘atrocious’ Susan Collins in 2020The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – War worries, funding follies, bomb scare MORE (D-Md.), whose panel handles D.C. appropriations. 

Congress has since blocked the district from adhering to the will of the voters in each annual spending package, even as the issue appears to have fallen through the cracks in spending negotiations, with a number of members saying this week they were either not following the status of the rider or unaware of its existence. 

Karl and Aris have the details here.  


Stay ahead of the news cycle with The Hills new Evening Report, featuring the days top stories and a look ahead to tomorrow. 

Virtual Event InvitationThe Future of EducationThursday, March 17 at 1:00 PM ET/10:00 AM PT 

After two years of virtual and hybrid learning, many students are still playing catch up. The federal government has provided billions of dollars in relief funds to school districts across the country. How have state officials been using these funds and how can equity issues be tackled? Join us at The Hills annual Future of Education Summit for headliner conversations with Education Secretary Miguel CardonaMiguel CardonaOn The Money Prices soar: Annual inflation hits 40-year highHillicon Valley Presented by Nokia Groups warn about Russians’ internet access100,000 student borrowers eligible for debt cancellation: DOEMORE, Sen. Bill CassidyBill CassidyOn The Money Prices soar: Annual inflation hits 40-year highHillicon Valley Presented by Nokia Groups warn about Russians’ internet accessGOP senator outlines proposal for ‘Energy Operation Warp Speed’MORE (R-La.), Rep. Jahana HayesJahana HayesOn The Money Prices soar: Annual inflation hits 40-year highHillicon Valley Presented by Nokia Groups warn about Russians’ internet accessMore than one-quarter of Congress has had COVID-19MORE (D-Conn.) and Govs. Jared PolisJared Schutz PolisOn The Money Prices soar: Annual inflation hits 40-year highHillicon Valley Presented by Nokia Groups warn about Russians’ internet accessDemocratic governors call for gas tax suspensionMORE (D-Colo.) and Chris SununuChris SununuOn The Money Prices soar: Annual inflation hits 40-year highHillicon Valley Presented by Nokia Groups warn about Russians’ internet accessHassan books million in fall airtime for reelection bidMORE (R-N.H.). Save your spot here.

Good to Know

The government funding bill sent to President Biden late Thursday night modestly raises funding for the Department of Homeland Security while seeking to exert limitations on the agencies managing U.S. immigration policy.  

The roughly $182 billion bill does not rescind $2 billion in border wall funding a messaging victory for Republicans even though the Biden administration has refused to build the wall. Its a detail that irked progressives, along with the legislations funding for significant detention capacity within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.   

Heres what else we have our eye on: 

  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Friday that legislation to revoke Russias ‘most favored nation trade status has already been prepared, and that the House plans to vote on it next week.  
  • The Hill put together a list of the countries that import the most oil from Russia, with China leading the way. 
  • Deutsche Bank said it is winding down operations in Russia following criticism of the banks previous stance to stay in the country.  



  • The Senate Finance Committee holds a hearing “The Promise and Challenge of Strategic Trade Engagement in the Indo-Pacific Region at 10 a.m. 
  • The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs holds a hearing “Advancing Public Transportation under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law at 2:30 p.m.  



  • The Senate Special Committee on Aging holds a hearing Unbanked and Credit Invisible: Building Financial Inclusion for Americas Underserved Populations at 9:30 a.m. 
  • The House Science, Space, & Technology Subcommittee on Research and Technology holds a hearing “Setting the Standards: Strengthening U.S. Leadership in Technical Standards at 10:00 a.m. 
  • The House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight holds an oversight hearing of the IRS, featuring testimony from Commissioner Charles Rettig at 10:00 a.m. 
  • The House Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs holds a hearing “Understanding the Role of Digital Assets in Illicit Finance at 10:00 a.m. 
  • The Senate Finance Committee holds a hearing “Examining Charitable Giving and Trends in the Nonprofit Sector at 10:00 a.m. 

Thats it for today. Thanks for reading and check out The Hills Finance page for the latest news and coverage. Well see you Monday.