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Today's newsletter, edited by Pete Gannon, is 692 words, a 2.5-minute read.

🔔 The dashboard: The S&P closed down 3.0% on growing concerns about the widening economic impact of Russia's war on Ukraine.

  • Biggest gainer? Schlumberger (+8.1%).
  • Biggest decliner? PVH Corp (-12.1%).

1 big thing: Gas prices not stopping us ... yet

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Gas prices are soaring toward an all-time high, but drivers are shrugging it off — at least for now, Nathan writes.

Why it matters: Energy prices were already a significant factor in the 40-year inflation high — and further increases will eat away at the wage gains workers have made during the pandemic.

  • The national average price of gasoline rose above $4 per gallon for the first time since 2008, a result of the Russia-Ukraine war sending oil prices above $130 per barrel.

Yes, but: Demand for gasoline increased in the last two full weeks of February, the most recently available data, according to the Energy Information Administration.

  • Demand was 7% higher in the week ending Feb. 25 than the comparable period a year earlier, when the average gallon was below $2.70.

Americans are fed up with being cooped up during the pandemic, and they’re eager to hit the road for vacation in 2022.

  • “The effects of a two-year pandemic are finally fading,” JPMorgan Funds chief global strategist David Kelly wrote Monday. “This is unleashing huge pent-up demand for travel, entertainment and leisure services.”

Worth noting: $4 a gallon gas isn't what it used to be. The nation’s record of $4.11 in July 2008 would've translated into a price of $5.25 in January 2022 when accounting for inflation.

The big question: How high can prices go before Americans change their behavior?

  • Jay Hatfield, CEO of investment manager Infrastructure Capital Advisors (ICAP), projected the country would hit a record of $4.70 later this year.

The bottom line: The upward pressure on gas prices is colliding with Americans’ desire to live life — and for now the latter factor is winning out.

2. Charted: U.S. lags on metric for female workers

Data: The Economist; Chart: Kavya Beheraj/Axios
Data: The Economist; Chart: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

The U.S. ranks behind 19 other countries in providing women with chances of equal treatment at work, according to The Economist’s 2022 glass-ceiling index (GCI), Pete writes.

  • The GCI, which ranks countries within the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), combines data on higher education, labor-force participation, pay, child care costs, maternity and paternity rights, business school applications and representation in senior jobs.

The U.S. fell by two places to the 20th spot, with decreases in both the proportion of women in the workforce and female GMAT-exam entrants.

  • It is still an outlier for providing no federally mandated parental leave, The Economist noted.

3. What's happening

🛢️ Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway disclosed a $5 billion investment in oil giant Occidental Petroleum. (Barron's)

📽 MoviePass is plotting a reboot. (Axios)

4. Bed Bath & Beyond gets a boost

Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

First, the promise of meme-stock glory inspired a rise in Bed Bath & Beyond’s stock, Nathan writes.

  • Now, it’s just plain, old-fashioned pressure from a major investor.

Driving the news: Bed Bath & Beyond’s stock soared over 34% Monday after investor Ryan Cohen, chairman of fellow meme stock beneficiary GameStop, disclosed a nearly 10% stake.

  • Cohen wants Bed Bath & Beyond to "narrow" its turnaround plan and inventory management while suggesting the company might need to sell itself to a private equity firm or spin off its BuyBuy Baby brand.
  • Bed Bath & Beyond said it would "engage constructively" with Cohen, noting it has had no prior contact with his investor group.

Flashback: Bed Bath & Beyond's stock doubled its stock price in January 2021 amidst the popular meme stock frenzy.

  • But the retailer's stock had relinquished all of those gains by last week — until Cohen’s investment reignited the flame.

5. A $3,200 gold-plated Walkman

The original Walkman made by Sony of Japan, circa 1980. SSPL/Getty Images

And you thought the Walkman was a goner.

What’s happening: Fresh from an earth-shattering run in the 1980s, the Sony Walkman is here to wrap around your ears again, Nathan writes.

  • Sony is debuting two models: a $1,600 version and a $3,200 gold-plated edition, Insider reports.

Of note: This time around, they won't work with cassette tapes. The brand now targets a “comparatively niche market of audiophiles looking to listen to higher-quality” music, Insider says.

6. What they're saying

“The West is finally waking up to the fascistic and inhumane nature of Vladimir Putin’s regime. The time has come for academic and cultural institutions to do the same.”
— A coalition of Ukrainian groups and anti-corruption activists in a petition calling on American cultural and academic organizations to disavow funding from Russian sources that profited via association with Putin.