Five Things to Know Now

 | Aug 22, 2014 | 5:30 AM EDT  | Comments
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Geopolitics is moving high again on investors' agenda. Asian stocks closed mostly higher (the Nikkei was the only index bucking the trend and ending in the red) but European markets started the day lower, as the Jackson Hole central bankers' meeting is underway.

Here are five things that matter for markets now:

  • Russia started to move an aid convoy towards eastern Ukraine's city of Luhansk, where pro-Russian rebels are fighting government forces. The Russian foreign ministry said in a statement that the "excuses" for delaying the convoy had been "exhausted." The aid trucks had been parked in no-man's land between Russian and Ukrainian border checkpoints. A Ukrainian government source told Reuters the move did not have Ukraine's permission and the convoy did not have a Red Cross escort as it had been agreed.
  • ISIS represents an "immediate threat" to U.S. interests everywhere and may take years to defeat, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said.
  •  A class action lawsuit challenging Facebook (FB) over privacy gathered support from 60,000 users, Max Schrems, and Austrian law student who started the suit, said. The suit passed its first legal review, as the Vienna Regional Court ordered Facebook Ireland to respond to his claims within four weeks, Schrems also said.
  • The London Stock Exchange plans to issue $1.56 billion in new shares to partly fund the purchase of Frank Russell, a unit of Northwestern Mutual Life insurance. The total value of the purchase, agreed in June, is $2.7 billion. 
  • Economists from investment banks have not been invited to this year's Jackson Hole meeting, as Fed Chair Janet Yellen is likely trying to restore its reputation as more of a central bankers' only event and is keen to avoid being seen as rubbing shoulders with Wall Street, the FT wrote

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