Stocks fell, and the dollar improved after a wave of rate hikes from central banks last week; the sentiment carried over into the start of this week, with US shares down on the day despite opening slightly higher. With most of the central banks’ decisions completed for this year, the investors might be looking past the fears of recession and benefit from signs of easing inflationary concerns. Still, this week is set to be quieter overall as the markets head into the holiday period. Elsewhere, the dollar declined today into 104.51 as markets weighed on the central bank prospects following the hikes. The euro was at 1.0620. Meanwhile, the German business outlook improved for the third straight month amid signs of peaking inflation, which boosted market confidence.
Likewise, the metals market benefited earlier today from a vow from China’s top officials to boost the economy next year through the support of the private sector and overall consumption. This helped lift the sentiment in the copper market, which remained supported above $8,300/t to settle marginally higher on the day at $8,320/t. The cash to 3-month spread strengthened into -$26.50/t. Likewise, lead improved, with a stronger upside seen in the latter half of the day to $2,160/t. Other metals struggle to help the sentiment, as the outlook given the covid woes outweighed the policy statement and were seen slightly lower on the day. Aluminium fell below the support of $2,370/t to close at $2,361/t; cash to 3-month tested the -$40/t level once again. Zinc also closed lower at $3,012/t.
Oil futures benefitted today from the news of a pledge from the US to refill strategic crude reserves; WTI and Brent now trade at $75/bl and $80/bl. Gold and silver wavered but edged lower in the latter part of the day to $1.788/oz and $23.00/oz, respectively.
All price data is from 19.12.2022 as of 17:30