Russian stock investors have become experts at bracing for the unexpected from President Vladimir Putin. After watching him seize companies, jail dissidents and support Syria, investors have put a discount on Russian stocks that makes them the cheapest in emerging markets.
Stocks slid, with an index of global equities tumbling the most in a month, while the ruble weakened to an all-time low as Russia’s growing military presence in Ukraine prompted an emerging-market selloff. The yen, U.S. Treasuries and gold rose as investors sought havens.
The International Monetary Fund will push the new Serb government to cut budget spending more before starting talks with the Balkan country on a new precautionary loan, a top Finance Ministry official said.