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Wall St eyes muted open as Ukraine nerves persist -Breaking


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO Traders working at the New York Stock Exchange, U.S.A, 26 January 2022. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

Devik Jain and Susan Mathew

(Reuters) – U.S. stocks opened flat Friday with investors watching closely for developments in Ukraine as they head into a long weekend.

The main indexes have suffered their second weekly loss this week due to headlines about the escalating tensions between Moscow, the West and a standoff in Ukraine.

Wall Street closed in the red after Moscow expelled Bartle Gorman as deputy U.S. Ambassador. The U.S. President Joe Biden indicated that an invasion by Russia of Ukraine might occur within the next few days.

U.S. Secretary Antony Blinken will meet with Sergei Lavrov the Russian Foreign Ministry next week. This should calm global markets, as many investors were hoping for a diplomatic solution that would prevent a war.[MKTS/GLOB]

8.57 AM ET ET was down 44 points (or 0.13%) and down 3.75points, or 0.0.09%. ET also fell 7.75points, or0.05%.

Christian Stocker (lead equity strategist, UniCredit Bank) stated that the stock market would remain volatile until important geopolitical uncertainty and monetary policy issues are resolved.

The day was characterized by volatility due to expiration of monthly options contracts.

Wall Street’s fear indicator, the CBOE volatility index (also known as Wall Street’s fear gauge), was up 26.94 last time, which is well beyond its long-term average 20.

This week was downbeat because of speculations regarding the Federal Reserve’s plans to tighten its policy for next year. On Friday, there will be a flurry in appearances by Fed members. Within a month, the Fed is expected to make its next monetary policies decision.

Stocker stated that “the concern is whether the pivot from stimulus of pandemic-era will squeeze economic growth, and inject more volatility across asset classes.”

JPMorgan Chase, NYSE:), rose 0.6% Friday to be the leader among large banks in premarket banking.

Tesla (NASDAQ) was flat while megacap tech stocks like Meta Platforms (NASDAQ), Apple (NASDAQ), Meta Platforms (NASDAQ), Google (NASDAQ), Amazon (NASDAQ) and Microsoft (NASDAQ) edged up.

Lithium producer Livent (NYSE:) Corp jumped 8.2% after forecasting upbeat 2022 revenue, while Deere (NYSE:) & Co added 1% after the world’s largest farm equipment maker raised its annual profit outlook.

DuPont (NYSE) rose 4.1% following the announcement by DuPont that it will sell its majority of its materials and mobility business for $11 million Celanese Celanese shares gained 3% (NYSE:)

Shake Shack Inc (NYSE:) fell 14.1% following a burger-chain’s first quarter revenue forecast that was below expectations. Omicron, which kept diners away from the restaurant and caused temporary closures, led to Omicron’s second-quarter revenues being lower than expected.

Roku (NASDAQ:) Inc fell 27.3% following disappointing quarter-end revenue figures and a bleak outlook in the first quarter.

DraftKings (NASDAQ:) Inc shed 15.2% after the sports betting company forecast a bigger-than anticipated 2022 loss.

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