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June 27, 2017

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World stocks rebound after tumbling on Ukraine crisis

MUMBAI/HONG KONG--Stock markets rebounded Tuesday after tumbling over the Ukraine crisis as Russian troops in border exercises were ordered back to bases and China prepared for a policy meeting that could advance economic reform plans.

Futures pointed to a comeback on Wall Street. Dow futures and S&P 500 futures were both up 0.7 percent.

Markets worldwide suffered a sharp sell-off Monday after Russian forces entered the strategic Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea. Tensions remained high on Tuesday, but Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered tens of thousands of Russian troops participating in military exercises near Ukraine's border to return to their bases.

It was not clear if Putin's move was an attempt to heed the West's call to de-escalate the crisis that has put Ukraine's future on the line.

European markets regained their footing. Germany's DAX climbed 1.1 percent to 9,465.43 and the CAC-40 in France gained 1.5 percent at 4,348.75. Britain's FTSE 100 jumped 1.3 percent to 6,795.29.

Developments in Ukraine have dominated the start of what is likely to be a busy week on the economic news front. As well as a raft of U.S. economic data that culminates with Friday's nonfarm payrolls figures for February, investors have the monthly policy meeting from the European Central Bank to monitor.

Asian investors also are watching this week's meeting of China's ceremonial legislature, the National People's Congress, for any signs the ruling party is ready to follow through on an economic reform blueprint issued in November to give markets a "decisive role" in the economy.

Tokyo rose 0.47 percent, or 69.25 points, to 14,721.48, Sydney added 0.29 percent, or 15.9 points, to close at 5,400.2 and Hong Kong ended 0.70 percent higher, adding 156.96 points to 22,657.63

Shanghai shed 0.18 percent, or 3.76 points, to 2,071.47 after rallying almost one percent on Monday. And Seoul gave up 0.54 percent, or 10.58 points, to 1,954.11.

"The immediate and likely largest impact from the risk-off sentiment due to the crisis in the Ukraine may have already passed," Norihiro Fujito, senior investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.

World shares tumbled on Monday after Russia's parliament voted to allow President Vladimir Putin to send troops into Crimea, a mainly Russian-speaking peninsula in the southeast of the ex-Soviet state.

In Moscow the MICEX closed down 10.79 percent and the other main Russian market, the RTS, closed down 12.01 percent, while the ruble sank to record lows against the dollar and euro.

However, David Baran, co-CEO of Symphony Financial Partners, a Tokyo-based hedge fund, said: "The Russian-Ukraine standoff may drag on, but a military confrontation with the West is likely well out of the question.

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