Continued geopolitical worries about a possible expansion of the conflict in the Middle East left their mark on world stock markets last week. Risk appetite fell, and bond yields were pushed down. Oil prices also continue to be affected, with Brent crude trading at above USD 91 per barrel. On the plus side, however, we are still seeing signs of a strong US economy. Stock markets are balancing between these contrasting realities. America’s broad S&P 500 index ended last week with a gain of 0.45%, while the Stoxx Europe 600 and Sweden’s OMXS30 large cap index rose by 0.96% and 1.66%, respectively, between October 6 and 13.