Tensions in Ukraine send world stocks tumbling

Global equities are sharply lower as investors head for the safe havens after Russia ups the ante in Crimea with threats of a full-scale invasion of Ukraine and the U.S. warns of economic isolation for Russia.

Russian markets have plunged, with the ruble-based MICEX stock index -8.7% and the dollar-based RTS -10.1%. The USD-RUB is +1.3% at 36.476 rubles.

"Invariably, many will be buying these dips, but on an index level I would stand aside and wait for clarity to develop," says strategist Chris Weston. "You know this market can go lower, very quickly, if geopolitics deteriorates and U.S. data doesn’t show any signs of a pickup."

Chinese shares buck the trend and rise 0.9% amid speculation that the government will unveil further economic reform at an annual policy meeting this week.

Japan -1.3%, Hong Kong -1.5%, India -0.8%.

Euro Stoxx 50 -1.6%, London -1.2%, Paris -1.8%, Frankfurt -2.3%, Milan -1.5%, Madrid -1.6%.

U.S. stock futures: Dow -0.6%. S&P -0.8%. Nasdaq -0.8%

The USD-JPY is -0.5% at ¥101.30, while gold is +1.7% at $1,344.20 and crude oil is +1.5% at $104.12.

10-year Treasury yields are +3 bps at 2.62%.

Comments (11)
  • Chubby Lipshitz
    , contributor
    Comments (342) | Send Message
    It's a great buying opportunity, Russia will get it's way (as it did in Georgia) and re-absorb Crimea into Russia (they gave it to Ukraine in the 1950's). The Western world finds it very easy to pick on small countries and turn them into pariah's and scapegoats to make everyone think the West cares, yet they apply double standards when it comes to handling Russia and China (Tibet ) as it's not so easy to push them around. Yes, we will have lots of hot air, mainly all bluster from the UN (as usual) but nothing concrete will be done, and all will be back to normal in a week or so once the journalists have squeezed every ounce of headline out of this one, and the next shiny new thing hits the front page.
    3 Mar 2014, 06:01 AM Reply Like
  • wizjinx
    , contributor
    Comments (487) | Send Message
    Sadly, I believe you're right. Other than economic sanctions, there's little anyone can do short of starting WW3. I am selling a few things, but I will be adding more HON, BA, and LMT on the dips. The proposed decreases in defense spending has just gone out the window it appears.
    3 Mar 2014, 06:47 AM Reply Like
  • rogerenroute
    , contributor
    Comments (232) | Send Message
    Putin must be stopped his incremental power grabs. He will go for the whole of Ukraine next. We have seen this game before. I think we need to kick Putin in the teeth with economic sanctions to wipe that smile of that megalomaniacs face for a while. It's the renewables sector that will benefit from Europe needing to get off Russian gas. I am long TSL,SPWR,JASO and CSIQ.
    3 Mar 2014, 07:13 AM Reply Like
  • Debutant
    , contributor
    Comments (2841) | Send Message
    "We have seen this game before"


    Yeah, I remember the invasion of Iraq!
    3 Mar 2014, 08:48 AM Reply Like
  • bbro
    , contributor
    Comments (11227) | Send Message
    Russian Billionaires...


    3 Mar 2014, 07:29 AM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    Sell it all. Hit Putin where it hurts him the most: his wallet! :-P
    3 Mar 2014, 07:50 AM Reply Like
  • xxm3njxx
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    I agree, its just another news headline to shake up the market. It will all get resolved and the markets will go higher.
    3 Mar 2014, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • Babysteps*
    , contributor
    Comments (54) | Send Message
    Putin is doing the US a favor. Ukraine is an economic basket case. Why not let him go in and feed the people instead of us.
    3 Mar 2014, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • rogerenroute
    , contributor
    Comments (232) | Send Message
    Folks Western European women lead all progressive movements in the world. They will boycott everything they can find that's Russian. You can be sure if they were using Russian gas to for power and heat in Germany they will go to a pellet boilers, solar hot water and more solar power and more wind energy. Putin doesnt understand how the men in western europe follow the womens lead or its a war in the household. Putin will be crushed by the European women's boycott.
    3 Mar 2014, 09:08 AM Reply Like
  • User 353732
    , contributor
    Comments (5161) | Send Message
    National boundaries are transient. Violence draws the lines that separate countries and more violence erases and redraws these lines. Almost the entire political map of modern world is an artifact of war.


    Outside the US most people know and accept this truth and understand that a Nation is much more defined by ethnicity, culture and tradition than it is by lines on a map.


    There will be transient consequences from Russia's reclaiming Crimea but no strategic effects. There will be no perceptible global economic or financial reverberations after a few weeks.
    The Russian Bosses have won and the Western Bosses have lost this encounter. The world economy and the concerns and priorities of the overwhelming majority of humanity are not changed by this fact. This is what retail investors will soon focus on and not the manufactured hysteria of Big Media and Washington DC or Brussels.
    3 Mar 2014, 09:13 AM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (2507) | Send Message
    Great post, kudos.
    3 Mar 2014, 02:02 PM Reply Like
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