Precious metals are trading sideways through midday on Wednesday, supported in part by news of two Ukrainian military jets being shot down by pro-Russian separatists in the Eastern part of Ukraine. Over the course of the past week or so, the eyes of the world have been glued to the skies over Eastern Ukraine as they are becoming more and more perilous for all aircraft that journey through them. With such little economic data on the slate for this week, investors are continuing to eye up and mull over the plethora of geopolitical happenings taking place currently.
Israel and Hamas Continue Battling in Gaza
With a death toll stemming from the last 2-3 weeks of violence eclipsing 650 people, most of which are Palestinian civilians, violence between Israeli and Hamas forces is only seeming to intensify with each passing day. The goal of Israeli Defense Forces is to eliminate Hamas rocket units situated throughout Gaza, most of which have been firing rockets over the border on a daily basis.
The real tragedy through all this violence is the displacement and killing of countless civilians. With Israel seemingly firing upon any building they want, the last few weeks have illustrated the plain fact that nowhere in Gaza can be considered safe. Seeing as the Middle East has long been a source of concern to the market due to its instability, the investing world will continue to keep an eye on Israel’s advances.
Concerns Over Russia-Ukraine Crisis Ease A Bit
After a story broke last week claiming that pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine shot down a passenger flight with nearly 300 people aboard, the market naturally began to panic a bit. In the wake of this story most equity markets sold off as investors feared the worst. Now, barely a week later, investor uneasiness with regard to this tragedy has taken many steps backwards. While investors are showing signs of increased risk-appetite, it is clear to see that a more cautious mood is guiding each and every decision they make.
With US-Russian relations already strained as a result of Russia’s inability to avoid making the crisis in Ukraine worse, it will be interesting to see how the investigation carries on over the coming weeks. Unfortunately, tensions were given another boost earlier today on the back of news that two Ukrainian military jets were shot down by surface-to-air missiles over Eastern Ukraine. This story is still developing, but Ukrainian officials have already claimed that the missile is of Russian origin.