OVERNIGHT MONEY: Ukraine back in the spotlight

TUESDAY'S BIG STORY:  

Ukraine focus: The House is expected to take its next step on Tuesday to formally condemn Russia for its military action in Crimea.

Meanwhile, the Senate is preparing a bill for a committee vote on Tuesday that would boost the International Monetary Fund's resources to help Ukraine.

The House's nonbinding resolution says Russia's intervention is a "violation of Ukraine's sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity."

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The measure concludes by saying that Russia's action "poses a threat to international peace and security."

The measure calls on Russia to pull its military from the Crimean peninsula, and asks President Obama to boycott the Group of Eight summit in Sochi, Russia, and hold the G-7 without Moscow.

Talks between the Washington and Moscow are in limbo, with Russian officials saying Monday that they are looking at other diplomatic options beyond the ones outlined by Secretary of State John Kerry.

So far, the Crimean parliament has already voted to become part of Russia. A referendum will be held March 16.

Meanwhile, Ukraine has voted to remove pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych, and has scheduled a presidential election for May.

The House passed a bill on Thursday that would provide $1 billion in loan guarantees for Ukraine to help it offset its energy costs.

As the House takes the next step, Senate Democrats are considering boosting IMF resources in their bill, which could set up a conflict with the House's plan.  

The Republican-led House did not include the IMF provision in any of its legislation, setting up the disparity as Congress tries to act quickly.

The Obama administration has asked Congress to pass legislation that would help on the IMF front.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew specifically requested the IMF language during a Senate Finance Committee hearing last week.

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and the panel's ranking member, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), are working on the legislation to provide financial assistance and condemn Russia for its actions. The panel is scheduled to vote on Tuesday but there is not a vote set up on the Senate floor. 

 

WHAT ELSE WE'RE WATCHING

Nitty gritty: House and Senate appropriators will continue their work in earnest on Tuesday to craft 12 spending bills this year. On the House side, lawmakers will chat with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson about his agency's request.

Senate appropriators will talk to Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Elmendorf about his agency's request as well as U.S. Comptroller General Gene Dodaro about the budget for the Government Accountability Office.

Speaking of the budget: The Economic Club of Washington will chat with Sylvia Mathews Burwell, director of the White House's budget office, about President Obama's fiscal 2015 $3.9 trillion proposal. 

Insurance regs: The Senate Banking Committee will discuss how insurers should be regulated, with Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and various insurance and regulatory experts.

Talking trade: U.S. and European Union negotiators will meet on Tuesday for their second day of talks about the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership deal. The trade teams discussed a broad range of issues on Monday from services and regulations to intellectual property during the fourth round of weeklong negotiations.

R&D: Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) will discuss on Tuesday the effects of sharply curtailing federally funding research and development and how the trend can be reversed at an event held by the Center for National Policy.

 

ECONOMIC INDICATORS 

Wholesale Inventories: The Commerce Department will release its January wholesale trade report that includes sales and inventory statistics from the second stage of the manufacturing process. The sales figures say close to nothing about personal consumption and don't usually move the market.

JOLTS: The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) for January evaluates the labor market's data on job openings, hires and separations.

 

WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED

— House unlikely to move on Lerner contempt charges this week

— Top trade official presses for completion of Doha round

— Rubio tax proposal breaks from Camp plan

— Rubio warns of UN Internet 'takeover'

— Deficit for 2014 reaches $379 billion, CBO says

— White House: Fannie, Freddie could hand government $179.2 billion in profits

— Survey: Manufacturers' optimism ticks up

— White House sees growth uptick in 2014

— Bitcoin exchange seeks U.S. bankruptcy protection

— Sessions demands Sebelius testify before Budget panel

 

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