The global equity markets are mostly lower but significantly off the worst levels of the night. The sour sentiment stemmed from increased tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Over the weekend, Russian President Putin declared two territories in eastern Ukraine as independent and ordered deployment of troops into those regions. Despite this, S&P Futures are in minor negative territory, and even pushed through the neutral zone in recent minutes. Spoos are trading about three points lower to around the 4340 area. The high was set during the holiday trade at 4391.25 while the low resides at 4250.00.
In Asia, China fell 1% while Japan tumbled 1.7%. The Shanghai was stymied by chatter that Beijing is mulling new regulatory plans within the tech sector. In Japan, the Nikkei dropped for a fourth consecutive day. Semiconductors suffered severe selling with Advantest and Tokyo Electron shedding 4-5%.
In Europe, the major bourses are mildly weaker. These markets are echoing the tone witnessed across the globe. Financials are among the leaders to the downside with lenders such as HSBC, Societe Generale, Credit Agricole, Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank all down around 2-3%.