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Daily Base Metals Report

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The US stocks faltered as growing coronavirus cases globally undermined prospects for economic recovery once again. Tensions between the US and China continue to rise as Trump’s advisers proposed to undermine Hong Kong’s currency peg as a way to punish China. The yield on 10y Treasuries climbed, and the dollar fell. Last night, Pres. Donald Trump has formally confirmed the US had notified the WHO of its withdrawal, effective as of 2021. British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rushi Sunak has set out a £30bn blueprint to save jobs and cushion the economy in the UK, by introducing a cut in a VAT along with bonus programme protecting workers returning from furlough.

LME metal prices were on the front foot today due to improved risk-on sentiment. Copper prices were well supported and tested resistance at $6,240/t and closed just off the highs at $6,232/t. Aluminium gained the most ground, closing just below the key resistance level of $1,670/t at $1,665/t. Nickel was well bid, testing the resistance level of 13,500/t twice today before closing below at $13,493/t. Lead consolidated, however, lost some of its strength in the afternoon, closing at $1,813/t. Lead cash to 3m spread tightened further to $12.75/t contango.

Oil futures slipped as virus spike stoked demand worries. At the time of writing, WTI and Brent trade at $40.60/bl and $43.08/bl respectively. Gold gained, breaking new highs last seen in September 2011, up to $1,811.06/oz. Silver was up, trading at $18.66/oz at the time of writing.

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COVID cases are rising across the globe as the delta variant spreads, this is causing some nervousness in financial markets, especially with the higher inflation rhetoric. Commodity prices have fallen since the Fed changed their tune inflation, the dollar has stabilised which has also been a headwind to prices. The summer months are traditionally quieter for metals demand which could prompt metals to consolidate. If the delta variant continues to spread, we may see higher levels of stimulus for longer. As things stand stimulus levels are set to be tapered and this could be brought forward if inflation remains high. We expect markets to remain volatile but on lower volume through the summer months.