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US stock market under pressure from Russia-Ukraine conflict

Relevance up to 01:00 2022-03-08 UTC–5

S&P 500

The US stock market plunged, while the US dollar advanced. The situation in Ukraine and strong data on US nonfarm payrolls.

Major US indices ended lower at the end of the week: the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.5%, the NASDAQ Composite slid by 1.7%, the S&P 500 fell by 0.8%.

S&P 500: 4,329

Friday’s statistics on the US labor market for February turned out to be positive. US nonfarm payrolls increased by 678,000, beating expectations and notching the best month for jobs growth since July. However, this increase followed a fall in December caused by the Omicron outbreak in the US. This means that the labor market has somewhat recovered. The unemployment rate fell to 3.8% from 4.0% in January. In general, the market has almost fully recovered to pre-COVID levels in terms of employment growth and the jobs level.

As for Russia’s military actions in Ukraine, the country continues to attack in several directions. Its forces are trying to encircle Kyiv and Kharkov. In the south, the Russians have opened a land corridor between Crimea and the Russian border in the east. Russia is seeking to expand the territory of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics to the borders of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

The West is discussing new sanctions amid Russia’s ongoing attack on Ukraine. Now traders fear that further sanctions will directly limit Russian oil and gas shipments. According to the German authorities, they are ready for such a scenario.

Two rounds of Russia-Ukraine peace talks have yielded almost no results. A third round of negotiations between the parties is set to take place this weekend.

USDX: 98.48. The US dollar hit a new annual high on both the situation in Ukraine and strong data on the US labor market. The Fed is still on track to raise interest rates on March 16.

USD/CAD: 1.2725. The pair continues to trade within the range of 1.2600 – 1.2800

Conclusion: The events unfolding in Ukraine remain the main factor driving the market. However, US stocks seem to be ready to gain on any signs of easing tensions between Russia and Ukraine.

*The market analysis posted here is meant to increase your awareness, but not to give instructions to make a trade.

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