Five Things to Know Now

 | Aug 27, 2014 | 5:30 AM EDT
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Asian markets closed higher, buoyed by the record gains in the U.S. But European shares are mixed on Wednesday morning, with investors cautious about tension in Ukraine and the Middle East.

Here are five things that matter for markets now:

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin said talks with his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko were "positive" and that a peace process should "start as soon as possible."
  • Militants from the Islamic State group, an offshoot of al Qaeda, have executed Syrian soldiers and are holding others hostage after capturing a military base in northeast Syria at the weekend, Reuters reported citing social media sources.
  • Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said markets have "over-interpreted" European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's speech in Jackson Hole last week. The comments were seen by many commentators as a more dovish than usual stance from Draghi.
  • George Soros's fund Quantum Partners, along with three other hedge funds, sued Bank of New York Mellon in London over Argentina's debt. BNY Mellon (BK) acted as a financial intermediary between the Argentine government and its bondholders. In the suit, the four hedge funds said the bank's actions had been "consistently designed to protect its own interests." BNY Mellon said the suit was "without merit."
  • Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was fined 14.5 million pounds ($24.65 million) by the UK regulator, the Financial Services Authority (FSA), for "serious failings" in its mortgage record keeping and in the advice it offered to clients.

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