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Financial Markets Play It Safe as Israeli Missiles Hit Iran Site

Risk-aversion grips financial markets after Israeli missiles strike a site in Iran

Risk aversion has swept through the financial markets following reports from ABC News, citing a US official, confirming Israeli missile strikes on a site in Iran, intensifying geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Reuters also reported, based on Iran’s Fars News Agency, that explosions were heard in central Isfahan airport, although the cause remains unknown and investigations are ongoing.

Prior to this, reports emerged of a radar battalion being hit in Syria near Izraa, along with speculation of explosions near Isfahan in central Iran and warplane activity across parts of Iraq. Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian warned in a CNN interview of immediate and maximum-level responses from Iran if Israel engages in further adventurism against Iranian interests.

Financial Markets Play It Safe as Israeli Missiles Hit Iran Site

Financial Markets Play It Safe as Israeli Missiles Hit Iran Site (Credits: Marietta Daily Journal)

Bloomberg sources revealed that Israeli officials had notified the US of plans for retaliation within the next 24-48 hours. In response, the Iranian Space Agency labeled the events as a failed and humiliating attempt by Israeli aviation. Concerns are mounting in the markets over a potential escalation in clashes along Israel’s northern border, particularly amid ongoing tensions in Gaza.

USD 0.12% 0.18% 0.12% 0.37% -0.13% 0.43% -0.39%
EUR -0.12% 0.07% 0.00% 0.26% -0.24% 0.32% -0.48%
GBP -0.18% -0.06% -0.06% 0.19% -0.30% 0.25% -0.55%
CAD -0.12% 0.00% 0.05% 0.25% -0.24% 0.31% -0.49%
AUD -0.37% -0.25% -0.19% -0.25% -0.49% 0.06% -0.76%
JPY 0.12% 0.26% 0.29% 0.24% 0.50% 0.55% -0.25%
NZD -0.39% -0.27% -0.21% -0.27% -0.02% -0.52% -0.75%
CHF 0.36% 0.48% 0.54% 0.48% 0.73% 0.26% 0.79%
(The map displays how much the values of different currencies have changed compared to each other. The currency you’re comparing from (like Euro) is on the left side, and the one you’re comparing to (like Japanese Yen) is on the top. So, if you choose Euro and then look across to Japanese Yen, the number in that box shows how much the Euro’s value changed compared to the Japanese Yen.)

Market reactions have been swift, with S&P 500 futures dropping by 1.25% and gold prices surging back towards record highs of $2,432, signaling a flight to safety. The US Dollar Index has risen to intraday highs near 106.30, reflecting increased demand for the greenback. Furthermore, WTI, the US oil, has spiked over 3% to nearly $85 on fears of escalated conflict in the Middle East.

In terms of currency movements, the US Dollar has strengthened against several major currencies today, with the strongest gains observed against the New Zealand Dollar. The heightened geopolitical tensions and the uncertainty surrounding potential further escalations have significantly influenced investor sentiment and market dynamics, prompting a risk-off approach across various asset classes.

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