US stocks declined on Friday, with tech shares paving the way, as Treasury yields rallied, sparking a risk-off sentiment in the markets. The dollar strengthened, and the 10yr US Treasury yield jumped to 1.6405%, the highest level since mid-February. European shares were mixed, in part driven by the virus outbreak in Italy along with division over the AstraZeneca vaccine. Meanwhile, the ECB stated that they have no intention on expanding the EUR1.85tr emergency programme despite promises made to step up the speed of bond buying. The UK economy shrank by less than expected in January, despite continued lockdown restrictions in place, as strong activity in the health sector support growth.
Activity on the LME was mixed today with copper and aluminium closing higher. Nickel was subject to selling pressure in the second half of the day, testing the support level of $16,000/t and closing at $16,013/t. Tin prices were also softer, closing at $25,600/t. Lead gave back its recent gains, closing on the back foot at $1,962.50/t; cash to 3-month spread tightened in to -$26.25/t. Copper edged higher today to test $9,100/t, before closing lower at $9,085/t. Lead prices were higher on the day, closing at $1,962.50/t. Iron ore has gained ground today, closing at a level last seen in mid-February at CNY1,072.50/mt.
Oil futures fluctuated on a rising dollar and mixed outlook on consumption, with WTI and Brent seen trading around $66.01/bl and $69.53/bl. Precious metals were mostly down on the day; gold and silver edged down to $1,718.86/oz and $25.79/oz.
All price data is from 12.03.2021 as of 17:30