3rd September 2014

US Markets Rally on Russia-Ukraine Ceasefire Talks

Wall Street markets opened in optimistic shape this morning, (Wednesday, 3 September), as reports of talks towards a ceasefire in Ukraine boosted stock performance across the board.

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US Markets Rally on Russia-Ukraine Ceasefire Talks

The morning’s trading saw the Standard & Poor 500 Index hit a record, adding 0.2% to climb to 2,006.79 at 9:31 a.m. New York time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also performed well, climbing 0.3%, or 52.98, points to achieve 17,120.54.

Speaking to Bloomberg, the chief investment officer for McQueen, Ball & Associates in the US, Bill Schultz said that the removal of just one of the present geopolitical risks across the world would help confidence return to the market.

Responsible for a $1.2 billion portfolio of investments, Mr Schultz continued:

“The Fed is in that mid-range now where they’re contemplating what to do next but don’t necessarily have to push anything at this point. With one more geopolitical impediment out of the way, that puts a calmer, less volatile market environment in place in the near-term.”

A Wall between Nations

However, one of the largest news agencies in Russia, RIA Novosti, was reporting that no such ‘steps’ were agreed.

Later reports by RIA also said that Ukraine was planning to build a wall along its Russian border within the next six months.

The article, which appeared just after 14:00 London time (15:00 CET, 17:00 Moscow), also quoted Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk as saying it was imperative that a new military approach was taken against Russia.

Mr Yatsenyuk went on to say that the action, part of Kiev’s National Renewal plan, was necessary as Russia was threatening his country’s national security as an:

“aggressor nation,”

With the US and Europe recently joining calls to accuse Russia of providing personnel and hardware support to the pro-Russian rebels, the hope for an end to the tensions is eagerly hoped for by investors.

Talking to Bloomberg, German-based Deutsche Postbank AG strategist Heinz-Gerd Sonnenschein said that even these tentative reports of talks were acting as a ‘positive driver’.

He continued to explain that a full conclusion would be the only way investors could divert their attention away from the political problem and focus on economic indicators, financial policies and other factors.

For now though, he surmised, it was still very much a waiting game.

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