US stocks declined today on the back of disappointing banking financial results. Biden’s newly-announced $1.9tr stimulus plan came under scrutiny, muting the positive sentiment. US retail sales declined by 0.7% m/m in December, confirming the pain the economy felt in the last months of the year due to increased lockdown restrictions. Meanwhile, the US consumer sentiment cooled down in January, highlighting continued market uncertainty despite vaccine improvements. On the vaccine front, the US government is urging states to speed up the rollout of a vaccine as infections continue to surge. The dollar strengthened, and the 10yr US Treasury yield weakened out to 1.0852%.
Metals prices were weaker today due to weak economic data and a stronger dollar, apart from tin that closed on the front foot at $21,100/t. Copper prices sold off to test appetite at $7,910/t, but support at that level triggered a close at $7,949/t. Zinc saw the strongest selling today, down 2.29%, closing at the day’s lows at $2,699/t; cash to 3-month spread tightened to -$8.00/t. Aluminium remained under pressure, closing at $1,991/t. Nickel tested the $17,800/t level and closed higher at $18,007/t.
Oil future slipped on the back of a stronger dollar, with WTI and Brent edging down to $52.37/bl and $55.10/bl. Precious metals were lower on the day; gold and silver are trading $1,831/.80/oz and $24.77/oz respectively.