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  • richard evans

Uneasy calm as markets digest Ukraine crisis

Good morning

Well obviously the headlines are all about Ukraine and will be for some time to come. There are reports of Russian military in Kyiv (thank you to all those who pointed me in the right direction of Kiev/Kyiv). It unfortunately isn’t a surprise that from what I am told we are not being given the full facts and details of what is going on, it is far worse than is currently being reported. We still don’t know Putin’s plans but there is a suggestion that he’s looking to split Ukraine in two, East and West. There are plenty of false news reports so it is difficult to know exactly what to believe.

The currency markets were understandably volatile yesterday, we saw a stronger dollar with GBPUSD trading down to 1.3275 and EURUSD to 1.1110. We did get a bit of a rebound overnight with those pairs trading up to 1.3435 and 1.1225 respectively, but this morning further US dollar buying has taken them to 1.3375 and 1.1175 as I type. EURGBP currently 0.8350 (GBPEUR 1.1975).

UBS have effectively said they will no longer accept Russian bonds as collateral, cutting the value of them to zero leading to some rather sizeable margin calls. I presume others will follow suit, if they haven’t already done so. Sanctions are being placed on Russia but so far they have not been ejected from the Swift payment system, some suggestion this is at the request of European banks.

The safe havens also saw a bit of action as you’d expect, EURCHF dropped to 1.0280 yesterday, now 1.0340. USDJPY moved to 114.40 but is now up at 115.30 and EURJPY dipped below 128.00 but now trades 128.85. Gold had a wild ride, trading up to $1970 before collapsing to $1880 late yesterday, now sits at $1915.

That’s about it for now. I don’t really want to talk about football given Spurs miserable showing against Burnley during the week. We are up against Leeds tomorrow, who had a similarly disappointing appearance against Liverpool Wednesday. Both Spurs and Leeds will be hoping for something better, could go either way. The main event though, weather permitting, is hopefully going to be my U15s who are set to play our first league match since December. Hopefully another three points coming our way.

One more piece of news. I’m due to have a shoulder replacement next Tuesday. It’s quite a big operation so I’m likely to be out of action for a few days. Can’t say I’m looking forward to it but I’m hoping the long term benefits outweigh the short term discomfort. Business as usual though other than the lack of my morning report.

Have a great weekend

- 10.00 EU confidence data

- 11.15 ECBs Lagarde speaks

- 13.30 US Core PCE, durable goods orders

- 15.00 US Michigan sentiment survey, pending home sales

- 20.30 CFTC position data

- Monday

- 00.30 AUS retail sales

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