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MOSCOW, March 14- Russian stock indexes hit their lowest levels since 2009 on Friday before clawing back some ground, two days before a referendum in Crimea that is expected to provoke western sanctions against Russia.
*Equities tumbled on Thursday on rising concerns over Ukraine and Russia and new signs of an economic slowdown in China. Secretary of State John Kerry will seek assurances from Russia on Friday that it will not seek to annex Crimea and will address concerns over Ukraine through negotiation, a senior State Department official said before talks in London.
SEVASTOPOL/DONETSK, Ukraine, March 14- Russia shipped more troops and armour into Crimea on Friday and repeated its threat to invade other parts of Ukraine, showing no sign of listening to Western pleas to back off from the worst confrontation since the Cold War.
LONDON, March 14- Heightened tensions ahead of Ukraine's weekend referendum in Crimea and stresses over China's growth pushed world stocks to their lowest in a month on Friday and sent investors scurrying into safe-haven gold and bonds.
*Focus back on Ukraine as Crimea referendum looms. LONDON, March 14- The yen was in demand on Friday, heading for its biggest weekly gain in more than a month against the dollar, underpinned by tensions in Ukraine and as worries about the health of the Chinese economy festered.
SYDNEY/ TOKYO, March 14- Safe-haven currencies like the Swiss franc and the yen were in demand on Friday, having surged overnight as tensions in Ukraine flared up and worries about the health of the Chinese economy continued to fester.
Tensions around Ukraine will dominate markets Friday as diplomatic efforts are expected to generate buzz ahead of Sunday's referendum in Crimea.
*Russia holds war games near Ukraine; Germany's Merkel warns of catastrophe. NEW YORK, March 13- Stocks on major world markets slumped while bonds rallied on Thursday as tensions between Russia and the West increased over Ukraine and concerns about a Chinese economic slowdown rose.
NEW YORK, March 13- The yen rose against the euro and the dollar on Thursday after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry signaled a possible response from the West if a referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region goes ahead on Sunday.
*Ukraine tensions increase; China data adds to more worries about slowdown. NEW YORK, March 13- World stock indexes dropped and the yen climbed against the dollar and euro on Thursday as concerns increased over the trajectory of the crisis in Ukraine.
Stocks tumbled amid concerns events surrounding Ukraine are escalating and China's slowing growth will rub off on the global economy and bite corporate profits.
Secretary of State John Kerry signalled a possible response from the West if a referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region goes ahead on Sunday. Kerry's comments before Congress, together with a warning by Ukraine's acting president Oleksander Turchinov of a possible Russian invasion, rekindled fears of a war breaking out in the region.
Treasuries prices rallied to their highest levels in over a week on Thursday on heightened tensions over a U.S.-European response against Russia if a referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region goes ahead.
*State-controlled Sberbank postpones investment conference. MOSCOW, March 12- Russia's largest bank Sberbank has postponed one of the country's highest profile investment conferences due to volatility stemming from the situation in Ukraine, the bank said on Wednesday.
*China's first domestic bond default creates jitters. NEW YORK, March 12- World stock indexes declined for a fourth day and copper dipped to near four-year lows before rebounding on Wednesday as worries about China's economic slowdown intensified.
*Copper hits near four-year lows. Treasuries prices rose in safe-haven bids on Wednesday on worries over the health of China's economy, which helped fuel strong demand at the U.S. government's 10- year Treasury note auction.
*Herbalife shares tumble on FTC investigation. NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday, as equities recouped much of their earlier declines amid signs of progress in diplomatic attempts to ease tensions in Ukraine.
*China's first domestic bond default creates jitters. NEW YORK, March 12- Global stock indexes declined for a fourth day and copper dipped to near four-year lows before rebounding on Wednesday as increasing concern about China's economic slowdown unnerved investors.
*China central bank ready to ease policy if needed- Reuters report. NEW YORK, March 12- Global stock indexes declined for a fourth day and copper hit four-year lows before rebounding on Wednesday as increasing concern about China's economic slowdown unnerved investors.
NEW YORK, March 12- U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday, as equities recouped much of their earlier declines amid signs of progress in diplomatic attempts to ease tensions surrounding Ukraine.