Advertisement

Geopolitical tensions boost oil prices on mixed day for global equities

A police officer stands guard by a makeshift memorial in front of the burnt-out Crocus City Hall concert venue in Krasnogorsk, outside Moscow, on March 25, 2024 (Olga MALTSEVA)
A police officer stands guard by a makeshift memorial in front of the burnt-out Crocus City Hall concert venue in Krasnogorsk, outside Moscow, on March 25, 2024 (Olga MALTSEVA)

Global stocks were mixed Monday, while oil prices advanced as escalations between Moscow and Ukraine raised questions over Russian oil production.

US oil prices jumped 1.6 percent on news of the latest drone attack by Kyiv causing a fire at a major Russian oil refinery, the latest in a series of strikes against the country's fuel industry.

Analysts also pointed to a rise in geopolitical unease following a separate attack on a concert hall in Moscow, claimed by the Islamic State group.

President Vladimir Putin on Monday acknowledged for the first time that "radical Islamists" were behind the attack that left 139 people dead, but suggested they were linked to Ukraine somehow.

"Heightened tensions between Ukraine and Russia have brought a halt to the rally in equity markets seen last week," said Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell.

"Investors were nervously watching proceedings from the sidelines, particularly as oil prices crept up once again."

On Wall Street, stocks retreated as a market rally showed signs of fatigue.

Maris Ogg of Fiduciary Trust said the reticent start was unsurprising given the relatively light schedule this week as far as economic news.

"It certainly wouldn't be unusual" to have some kind of consolidation after last week's highs," Ogg said.

Sentiment was also dented after EU antitrust regulators said they were probing US tech giants Apple, Google parent Alphabet and Facebook parent Meta in relation to a digital law intended to ensure competition.

Earlier, Frankfurt's DAX added 0.3 percent to set a new record, as Paris finished flat and Tokyo lower.

Meanwhile shares in Boeing climbed 1.4 percent after the company announced Monday that CEO Dave Calhoun would leave his post as the aviation giant faces increased scrutiny after a series of safety incidents and manufacturing issues.

Susannah Streeter at Hargreaves Lansdown said the gain paled in comparison to the 25 percent drop in Boeing shares since the start of the year.

"It's not surprising that there appears to be some skepticism about the changes, given previous executive merry-go-rounds appear to have made no difference and the company has slid into further chaos," she said.

- Key figures around 2050 GMT -

New York - Dow: DOWN 0.4 percent at 39,313.64 (close)

New York - S&P 500: DOWN 0.3 percent at 5,218.19 (close)

New York - Nasdaq Composite: DOWN 0.3 percent at 16,384.47 (close)

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.2 percent at 7,917.57 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: FLAT at 8,151.60 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX: UP 0.3 percent at 18,261.31 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.3 percent at 5,044.19 (close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 1.2 percent at 40,414.12 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: DOWN 0.2 percent at 16,473.64 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.7 percent at 3,026.31 (close)

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.0841 from $1.0808 on Friday

Dollar/yen: UP at 151.42 yen from 151.41 yen

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.2638 from $1.2626

Euro/pound: DOWN at 85.76 pence from 85.60 pence

Brent North Sea Crude: UP 1.5 percent at $86.74 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: UP 1.6 percent at $81.95 per barrel

burs-jmb/nro