US stocks extended their position today on positive economic data. US initial jobless claims fell by 33,000 in the week ending January 30th, the third weekly decline, a sign that the labour market is starting to improve as the number of COVID-19 cases subsides. The spread between the 5- and 30-yr US rates steepened to the levels last seen in October 2015, driven by hopes of pandemic-relief packages as well as rising expectations of inflation. At the time of writing, 10yr Treasury yield is at 1.1392%; the dollar strengthened. Meanwhile, the BoE said that the UK economy is heading for a pickup as vaccinations rates remain on target to reach 15m vulnerable in a couple of weeks. UK bond yields rose across the board.
LME metal prices were on the front foot today, apart from copper, which closed lower on the day at $7,823/t. Zinc prices were well supported and tested resistance at $2,644/t, amid the signs of tightening supply of ore in China; prices closed lower at $2,627/t. Aluminium was well bid in the second half of the day, testing the resistance level of $1,995/t, before closing below at $1,993.50/t; the cash to 3-month spread widened out to -$5.00/t. Likewise, SHFE aluminium prices strengthened, closing at CNY15,440/mt; the next day prices rallied on opening up to CNY15,500/mt. Nickel prices remained marginally supported above $17,500/t before closing at $17,646/t. Lead was range-bound but closed higher on the day at $2,044/t.
Oil futures fluctuated today on stronger dollar and promises of supply cuts. At the time of writing, WTI and Brent trade at $56.00/bl and $58.64/bl. Precious were on the back foot, with silver and gold falling to $26.14/oz and $1,790.52/oz respectively.