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Markets on edge as Middle East conflict escalates

Tuesday, September 23, 2014 - 01:57

Stocks fall as the conflict in the Middle East intensified, with President Obama vowing to continue the fight against the Islamic State fighters. Bobbi Rebell reports.

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U.S. stock markets on edge, with some money moving into safe havens like bonds, as the U.S. military strikes in Syria continue. The S&P 500 down for the third day in a row as President Obama vowed to continue the fight against the Islamic fighters: SOUNDBITE: U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Once again, it must be clear to anyone who would plot against America, and do Americans harm that we will not tolerate safe havens for terrorists who threaten our people." On Tuesday, CNN reported that the attacks targeted, among others, a group of senior Al Qaeda members, known as Khorasan Group, that was actively plotting a U.S. homeland target and Western targets. And that kind of threat is something the markets are watching out for, says Ed Dempsey, Chief Investment Officer at Pension Partners. SOUNDBITE: ED DEMPSEY, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, PENSION PARTNERS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "It's still very much a very small, local regional conflict having no opinion or no action on earnings, on company revenues. Of course, where that would change would be if there were some massive or disruptive terrorist attack." But falling oil prices, and a less energy dependent U.S. economy- serve as a buffer to the Middle East unrest. Hilary Kramer, President and CIO of A&G capital: SOUNDBITE: HILARY KRAMER, PRESIDENT AND CIO, A&G CAPITAL (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The reason we see such a good market day relative to bombing going on in the Middle East in such a strong campaign, if you look at the numbers of bombs that were dropped, it has to do with the fact that the retailers don't have to worry about paying more to heat their stores. Macy's doesn't have to worry about its flagship on 34th street costing a few extra million dollars for energy prices. The airlines, you know, it's a big relief for them as well, even though they hedge their prices." But Kramer is quick to add that the reaction could ramp up if the situation were to escalate and have a more direct impact on the U.S. economy.

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Markets on edge as Middle East conflict escalates

Tuesday, September 23, 2014 - 01:57