Russian stocks trading in New York sank for a fourth day as concern mounted that President Vladimir Putin faces stiffer international sanctions after his special forces were spotted in eastern Ukraine.
Angela Merkel wasn’t in a hurry to inflict economic pain on Russia. Cautious, pragmatic and mindful of German business ties to the country, the chancellor tried to defuse the Ukraine crisis through back-channel diplomacy and frequent phone calls with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Sanctions over Ukraine may threaten Russia’s investments in assets denominated in euros and U.S. dollars, Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev said, urging the use of the nation’s wealth funds for domestic projects.
Ukraine unleashed an offensive to dislodge militants from cities in the eastern Donetsk region as authorities in the capital Kiev said Russian special forces were identified among the anti-government groups.