Russian President Vladimir Putin is showing no signs of heeding Western calls to ease the standoff in Crimea, where pro-Kremlin forces stepped up their takeover of the Ukrainian region preparing for a separatist referendum.
Crimea will join Russia once lawmakers in Moscow pass the necessary legislation and there’s nothing the West can do to stop the process, according to the separatist Ukrainian region’s deputy parliamentary speaker.
U.S. stocks rose a second week, sending the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index to a record, as better- than-forecast data on hiring and manufacturing fueled optimism in the economy and overshadowed concern on Ukraine.
Russia said Ukraine’s natural gas debt climbed to almost $2 billion and signaled supplies may be cut, ratcheting up pressure on its neighbor as they scrap over the future of the Black Sea Crimea region.
The melody Russians know as “Goodbye America” blared over loudspeakers as the host country’s athletes arrived at Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, where the Paralympic Games began 400 kilometers (250 miles) from the showdown in Crimea.
Treasuries fell for a fourth day, while oil and the dollar rose after stronger-than-forecast jobs growth fueled optimism in the American economy. U.S. stocks were little changed as Russia said it may cut Ukraine’s gas supplies.