Stocks end lower ahead of critical Ukraine vote

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Markets wavered, ending lower as investors monitored developments in Ukraine’s Crimea, where residents will vote Sunday on whether to secede to Russia. If Crimea secedes, the United States and European Union plan to slap sanctions on Russian officials and businesses accused of escalating the crisis and undermining Ukraine’s new government. The sanctions would likely affect the energy sector and oil in particular, said one observer. Beyond the Ukraine, investors next week are expected to get updates on US housing and from Fed chair Janet Yellen. The central bank is expected to continue scaling back its stimulus.

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