US stocks tentatively rallied after Russian President Putin saw “certain positive shifts” in talks with Ukraine. Investors are cautiously buying risky assets as we’ve seen this movie before over the past couple of weeks… Russia signals an openness for talks and then shortly after their military has made further advancements or repositioned themselves. Russian airstrikes across Western Ukraine and troop movements are raising concerns that another attempt at Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, could happen in the coming days.
Equities quickly gave up earlier gains as the West appears poised to continue deliver more pressure on the Russian economy. President Biden urged all allies to suspend normal trade with Russia, with the US banning many imports of Russia.
Chinese tech stocks have had a rough patch over the past couple of years dealing with trade wars, COVID-19, China’s tech crackdown, and now delisting fears. It looks like Chinese stocks could see more investors abandon ship as human rights issues might draw more attention following the war in Ukraine. What is also complicating investor appetite for exposure to Chinese stocks is Beijing’s relationship with the Kremlin. If China shows they are offering favorable conditions to the Russians, global investors will likely expect swift action from EU and US leaders, which could make life harder for many Chinese stocks.
The preliminary Michigan consumer sentiment index dropped from 62.8 to 59.7. Sentiment is in freefall as Americans grow worrisome over surging widespread price increases and over economic growth concerns. Next month’s report will likely be much worse.