2 Dow Stocks Worried About Russian Tensions and Putin's Wrath

Tension between the U.S. and Russia picked up again today and two companies could be impacted more than others on the Dow.

Jul 17, 2014 at 3:30PM

Tensions between the U.S. and Russia increased again today after the U.S. announced new sanctions, a Russian plane shot down a Ukrainian fighter jet, a Malaysia Airlines plane crashed in Ukraine, and Vladimir Putin hinted at retaliatory sanctions against the U.S. and Europe. When tensions between major economic powers rise like this, stocks generally fall.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) has fallen 130 points near the end of trading, but the bigger sell-off is going on in Russia: The Market Vectors Russia ETF is down 7% today.

Two U.S. stocks worried about Russia
Most companies on the Dow Jones Industrial Average have some dealings in Russia, but two notable ones are Visa (NYSE:V) and ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM), which are down 1.8% and 1%, respectively.

Visa Image Tmf

As a global company, Visa can be caught in political conflicts.

Visa generates 4% of its revenue in Russia, and its partner Gazprombank is one of the targets of U.S. sanctions. Gazprombank and others won't be allowed to access capital in U.S. markets as part of an effort to put pressure on Russia to leave Ukraine's Crimea region. Right now Visa's business will go on as usual, but this recalls Russia's earlier pressure for Visa and other payment processors to pay billions of dollars for access to the Russian market. So far those threats haven't led to any payment or exit from the country, but today's actions are a step in the wrong direction.  

A bigger impact could be felt by ExxonMobil, which has a massive joint venture with Russian firm Rosneft to explore the Arctic, conduct Siberian fracking and Black Sea drilling, and construct natural-gas export terminals. The two companies are tied at the hip, and at the very least the tension between Washington and Moscow makes these massive partnerships uncomfortable. Right now, investors shouldn't panic, but Putin's reaction to recent events and his potential retaliation against U.S. companies could hit ExxonMobil where it hurts -- in the pocketbook.  

These kinds of tensions can hit stocks in the short term, but in the long term, the odds of a major U.S.-Russia conflict are low. Look at major dips as a buying opportunity, because there shouldn't be a big impact on earnings for Visa or ExxonMobil unless they're completely kicked out of Russia, which is unlikely.

An energy game-changer
Imagine a company that rents a very specific and valuable piece of machinery for $41,000 per hour (That's almost as much as the average American makes in a year!). And Warren Buffett is so confident in this company's can't-live-without-it business model, he just loaded up on 8.8 million shares. An exclusive, brand-new Motley Fool report reveals the company we're calling OPEC's Worst Nightmare. Just click HERE to uncover the name of this industry-leading stock and join Buffett in his quest for a veritable landslide of profits!

Travis Hoium manages an account that owns shares of Visa. The Motley Fool recommends Visa. The Motley Fool owns shares of Visa. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of fool.com.

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to www.fool.com/beginners, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at www.fool.com/podcasts.

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.

Compare Brokers