Investors dumped shares in favour of safe haven government bonds on Friday as US airstrikes in Iraq to prevent “genocide” by Islamic State jihadists heightened geopolitical tensions.

The air attacks followed an escalation in Russia’s trade war with the West and the latest Israel-Palestinian conflict.

“The rate by which investors are fleeing out of stocks is speeding up as geopolitical tensions continue to increase,” said Markus Huber, senior analyst at brokers Peregrine & Black.

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