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Daily Base Metals Report

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US stocks picked up to record highs once again today, up from the last couple of days of retreat. Pfizer has sought regulatory clearance for shipment within the EU, with promises of immediate distribution given the approval. Likewise, the US Vice President Mike Pence said that vaccine distribution could begin as early as the third week of December. On the other hand, the Fed’s Powell cautioned the markets that the US economy remains damaged despite the progress made in vaccine development. The dollar weakened out to 91.336, the level last seen in April 2018, and the 10yr yield strengthened up to 0.9128%. The pound edged up higher to 0.7462 to the dollar, as investors bet on Brexit deal within days.

LME metal prices were on the front foot today on the back of strong factory data from China; only zinc closed lower on the day at $2,770/t. Nickel prices were well supported and tested resistance at $16,290/t and closed just off the highs at $16,278/t. Copper was well bid in the second half of the day, testing the resistance level of $7,740/t, before closing below at $7,694.50/t. Aluminium prices remained supported above $2,040/t and closed at $2,064.50/t; the cash to 3-month spread tightened to -$7.00/t. SHF copper prices, however, softened, closing below the record highs at CNY56,910/mt. Lead and tin prices picked up higher on the day, closing at $2,087/t and $18,895/t respectively.

Oil futures were on the front foot as OPEC+ sought more time to reach the supply deal. At the time of writing, WTI and Brent trading at $44.78/bl and $47.60/bl. Precious metals gained foothold, with gold and silver edging up to $1,813.33/oz and $23.88/oz respectively.


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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.