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Geopolitical worries mount for markets

Friday, August 08, 2014 - 01:44

World shares tumble and oil and gold jump after U.S. President Obama authorised targeted air strikes in Iraq. Joanna Partridge asks if geopolitical risk is finally proving a big worry for investors.

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Stockpiling supplies in the Kurdish city of Arbil. Locals alarmed by the news Islamic State militants had advanced to within half an hour's drive of the city. This movement saw U.S. warplanes strike Iraq on Friday for the first time since American troops pulled out in 2011 after President Obama said Washington must act to prevent genocide. The situation just the latest concern for markets. Asian and European stocks slid and the dollar also fell. While the oil price jumped. Investors are taking fright over the threat to growth from a range of conflicts, fears over the spread of Ebola and concerns about the global recovery. Patrick Armstrong is from Plurimi Investment. SOUNDBITE: Patrick Armstrong, CIO, Plurimi Investment, saying (English): "Potential air strikes in Iraq, if necessary, that creates risk, creates uncertainty. And I think in August, there's just a lot of people who put their money on the sidelines and they'll wait back until September. So, there's no real rush to get money back into the market." Germany's DAX fell to its lowest level in 5 months. The ongoing crisis in Ukraine knocked airline stocks. After Russian Prime Minister Medvedev said Moscow was considering banning European and U.S. airlines from flying transit routes through Russian airspace in retaliation to tougher Western sanctions. Fidel Helmer is from Hauck and Aufhaeuser. SOUNDBITE: Fidel Helmer, Capital Markets Expert, Hauck and Aufhaeuser private bank, saying (German): "Today's topics are also yesterday's topics, and unfortunately almost every day something new adds to the burden. We have conflicts that aren't budging in Israel, Gaza, Ukraine, Iraq and Libya. And then there's other disturbing news like bank failures in Portugal or sanctions against Russia, as reported in the media, then counter-sanctions by Putin." With little end in sight for many of the conflicts spooking investors, the bumpy summer ride looks set to continue.

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Geopolitical worries mount for markets

Friday, August 08, 2014 - 01:44