Traders have obviously decided to partially clear the decks ahead of the referendum that is set to take place in Crimea this weekend, as the DAX has broken through the 200-day moving average in today's trading. The politicians have already made their case that they should join Russia and now it is the turn of the voting public.
Historically speaking, Crimea has many ties with Russia, and from a financial point of view Russia is considerably more stable than Ukraine. Developments over the weekend could force many EU politicians into taking sanctions against Russia, rather than just making disapproving comments. With Germany seeing 30% of its energy being provided from Russia via Ukraine, this will be a particularly delicate time for the country and the DAX indices.
At the same time as things are becoming ever more confusing in the Black Sea, as the flow of economic data out of China is becoming less and less impressive. Yesterday’s Chinese industrial production and retail sales both came in well below expectations, and have added to growing fears that the dependence the markets once had for China to prop up demand are no longer there.