Stocks were poised to open lower this morning as the Russian/Ukraine conflict escalated over the weekend, and indeed a sell-off occurred at the opening bell. The Dow dropped by more than 200 points by mid-morning, but did alleviate some of the damage as the afternoon wore on. These types of conflicts are difficult to game, and it seems most traders were content to watch from the sidelines until there is some more clarity. Because these situations are so fluid, it is typically wise to keep activity to a minimum until things calm down.
By the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 153 points to finish the day at 16,168. The S&P 500 was down 13 points to close at 1845. Gold was up $29 to trade at $1350 per ounce, while oil was up $1.91 to trade at $104.50 per barrel WTI.
On the domestic economic front, the ISM Manufacturing Index number was better than expected as was the PMI Manufacturing Index report, despite the weather interruptions. Actually, we’ve gotten decent economic data the last week or so. Let’s see how Friday’s employment report shapes up. In the meantime, we’ll keep an eye on the Russian/Ukraine affair.
Have a nice evening everyone.