Tech shares led the US markets yesterday as investors continued to debate over the economic recovery, with the S&P 500 oscillating around unchanged. US retail sales fell by 3.0% in February, after a 7.6% gain seen in January, on the back of severe weather conditions during the period. The dollar fluctuated, and the 10yr US Treasury yield edged marginally higher to 1.6144%, as the Fed began its two-day policy meeting. Investors anticipate a steady policy stance from the Fed today. The European stocks edged higher as health ministers debated the future of AstraZeneca’s vaccine while the drug regulator reiterated that its benefits outweigh the risks.
LME base metals were all on the back foot yesterday, with copper falling as much as 2%, and closing below the key support level of $9,000/t at $8,960.50/t. Zinc was next in line, selling off to test support at $2,795/t, before closing near the day’s lows at $2,810/t. Aluminium lost the ground, closing below at $2,202.50/t. Nickel was also marginally lower, recovering in the second part of the day on the news of NorNickel stating that they will likely fall short from output estimates due to the flooding. The metal closed at $16,151/t. Tin was marginally unchanged, closing at $25,000/t.
Oil futures retreated for the third day in the row, as investors assess global demand recovery. WTI and Brent edged down to $64.60/bl and $68.21/bl. Precious metals were mixed, with gold and silver falling down to $1,731.18/oz and $25.96/oz respectively.