The major market averages gapped lower at Monday's open on escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Russia's main stock index plunged 11% Monday while in Europe, Germany's Dax fell 3.4% and France's CAC 40 dropped 2.7%. Gold jumped more than 2% on safe-haven buying, though it appears to have recently found its bottom as a vote of confidence that either the global economy is turning a corner, quantitative easing is here to stay for longer than expected, or both. As well, volume on the major indices was lower with the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 each recovering a good part of their losses, an indication that the selling lacked any serious thrust.
Futures are up strongly at the time of this writing as Putin ordered his troops back to military base. He said his government was worried about radical extremists in Kiev, but would use military force in Ukraine only in an extreme case. Yesterday's drop was an opportunity to pick up shares in some leading names including Tesla Motors (TSLA) as well as other leading stocks as they pulled into logical areas of support.
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