Are the Russians begging for a war with the E.U., U.S. and other industrialized societies? The massing of troops on the Ukrainian border, reported only mid-afternoon by The New York Times seems to indicate the answer is "yes."
The Russians seem to have particularly inflamed German chancellor Angela Merkel, who, it has been mistakenly reported too often, has a "special" relationship with Putin. In fact, the relationship is that Merkel speaks Russian but has gone on record any number of times denouncing the neo-Soviet-style boss. (Let's remember the war of secession in the U.S. - everyone... Read more
The worry of war in the Ukraine/Crimea region is not what is specifically on the minds of safe haven investors right now. This is not to say that war cannot beak out should either the Ukrainians or Russians lose their heads.
What is on their minds is the longer-term impact of economic issues that will inevitably flare up once the dust settles from some sort of union between Russia and Crimea. The U.S. and Europe cannot let the geopolitical challenge go unanswered. If we were the Russians, we would be very concerned about the deliberateness with which the allies are arriving at a plan.
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Like a gnat on a summer night, the situation in Ukraine flutters and darts around the periphery of the world's vision. Just when things seem to simmer down, the tension ratchets up again.
Germany has said they would send natural gas they hold in reserve to Ukraine in an emergency. Scandinavian countries are backing the Germans up and promising to feed Germany should the Russians get hot headed... or more hot headed.
Speaking of hot heads, a Ukrainian legislator said that his country could re-develop nuclear weapons in very short order. He also hinted, ever so slightly, that there is... Read more
In a very light news day, gold and silver find themselves trading just up or slightly down, respectively.
There is some support from the ongoing crisis in the Crimea, and in the seemingly softer and softer data that keeps issuing from the Chinese economy. The only thing different regarding China right now is that, because gold prices have pushed higher since China's last data releases, gold speculators in the red giant aren't leaping into the market as a haven play.
Interestingly, oil is down not quite 1.5% on the day, uncoupled from gold, which usually trades in tandem with our basic... Read more