The Crimean referendum has closed, and Ukraine has lost control of the region, but the events do not look to have affected market sentiment as the majority of the global indices gain strength on Monday.
The FTSE 100 is trading at a 0.78% (50.87-point) premium to its Monday open, currently at 6,578.34. Leading the charge is minerals and resource giant Glencore Xstrat (GLEN.L), up 3.67% at 307.90 after announcing the close of a multibillion-dollar sale of its Las Bambas Peruvian copper project to a Chinese consortium.
The DAX 30 is up 1.12%, currently trading 106.09-points above the day’s open at 9,162.50. The day’s biggest gainer is engineering multinational Siemens Aktiengesellschaft (SIE.DE), currently up 3.21% (2.92-points) at 93.52. The gain comes as Bank of America shifts its rating of the company from neutral to buy.**relatedarticle**
Across the Atlantic, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up more than 1%, currently trading at 13,233.02. Leading the way is IT company IBM, up 1.75% at 185.38 heading into the U.S. afternoon session. Similarly, the NASDAQ 100 is up 1.10% at 39.90, with Biotech firm Biogen Idec Inc. (BIIB) up 3.92% at 347.41 on a recent approval.
The U.S. gains come as the Federal Reserve reports better than expected industrial production figures, with the MoM data coming out at 0.6% versus a forecast of 0.1% and a previous figure of -0.2%. The Fed also reported better than expected capacity utilization rate data, compounding the bullish bias with a rate of 78.8% compared to a forecast 78.6%.
The risk-on sentiment is somewhat counterintuitive, as the geopolitical tension heats up in Eastern Europe. The vast majority of Crimeans voted in favour of the region becoming part of Russia, but global leaders have united in their opinion that the secession is illegal. Sanctions will likely be imposed on Russia as the week goes on, which could put pressure on the markets and negate any early-week gains.
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