US stocks pulled back from record highs today as hopes around the new vaccine proved to be short-lived and investors turned to the rising numbers of coronavirus cases. The US retail sales missed estimates in October, increasing by 0.3% m/m, highlighting the impact of continued uncertainty surrounding the pandemic. The dollar softened out to 92.485 and the 10yr yield on US Treasuries weakened out to 0.8783%. In Europe, stocks declined, led by hospitality, after France joined Germany in attempts to keep the economy closed over the Christmas period. The pound rose on the news of a breakthrough in Brexit negotiations with the EU, with the deal scheduled as soon as next week.
Prices on the LME were stronger today as risk appetite returned. Aluminium prices challenged resistance at $1,980/t and the prices closed near the day’s highs at $1,977.50/t. Tin was the biggest winner as protracted buying pressure prompted a break of resistance at $19,000/t, but closed lower at $19,025/t. Nickel remained supported above 15,700/t, closing marginally higher on the day at $15,939/t; the cash to 3-month spread widened out to -$55.01/t. Copper was weaker closing on the back foot at $7,068/t. Elsewhere in the metals market, COMEX copper prices edged higher to break record highs and closed at $322.95/lb. SGX iron ore prices also improved and closed at $120.29/t.
Oil futures edged lower today after the OPEC meeting led to no significant conclusions. At the time of writing, WTI and Brent trade at $41.05/bl and $43.39/bl respectively. Precious metals were mostly lower, with gold and silver trading at $1,885.50/oz and $24.50/oz respectively.