US stocks fluctuated ahead of the Fed Reserve Powell speech on the view of the central bank on the recent spike in Treasury yields. Mortgages rose above 3.0% for the first time in seven months, raising concerns that higher borrowing costs could mute demand. In the meantime, Biden’s programme is facing one of its final hurdles, the passing of which could pour an additional $1.9tr into the economy. The US initial claims rose slightly in the week ending February 27th, as labour market uncertainty ensues. The 10yr US Treasury yield was steady, as it approached 1.4895%; the dollar was marginally higher.
Metal on the LME continued the sell off, with nickel suffering another day of sharp losses, closing at $16,133/t. Copper prices sold off to test appetite at $8,700/t, in part due to a rise in LME inventories, but support at that level triggered a close at $8,907.50/t. Aluminium lost the ground, closing at the day’s lows at $2,153.50/t. Zinc remained under pressure, especially in the second half of today, closing at $2,748.50/t. Lead tested the $2,000/t level to close near day’s lows at $2,015/t; cash to 3-month spread tightened up to -$18.00/t.
The oil futures surged after the OPEC+ decision to keep the supply unchanged. At the time of writing, WTI and Brent trade at $64.80/bl and $67.65/bl. Precious metals wavered, with gold and silver edging around $1,711.14/oz and $26.04/oz respectively.
All price data is from 04.03.2021 as of 17:30