US stocks fluctuated as investors shifted their attention to bond markets today amid growing concerns surrounding energy prices and, in turn, inflation. The dollar paired moderate gains. The 10yr US Treasury yield jumped to 2.27%, the level not seen since May 2019, after the Fed and the ECB intensified their intentions to hike borrowing costs further amid mounting inflationary costs. Moreover, ECB’s President Lagarde played down fears of stagflation in the bloc, and stated that even in the worst-case scenario, the economy is poised to grow by at least 2.3%. In the meantime, NY state manufacturing index fell to the lowest level since May 2020, as the number of orders declined, but inflation remained elevated.
A mixed day of trading on the LME exchange, with the divergence driven by news impacting isolated metal markets. Aluminium jumped higher after the immediate alumina ban from Australia introduced on Sunday, further tightening the global supply of aluminium. The metal jumped 3.3% at the open to edge higher throughout the day to close at $3,521/t. Likewise, European steel prices jumped to record highs as Europe aims to ban imports from Russia, further cutting Russian industrial producers off from global trade. Nickel closed after exceeding its 15% limit on the day, falling to close at $31,380/t. Copper fluctuated during the day, testing the support level at $10,200/t before settling into $10,295/t; cash to 3-month widened out to -$10.00/t. Lead and zinc have closed marginally closer at $2,258/t and $3,940/t, respectively.
Oil futures surged amid growing supply fears as Europe is considering a ban on Russian oil imports. WTI and Brent now trade at $110.74/bl and $115.20/bl, respectively. Gold rose marginally to $1,931/oz after last week’s strong declines, driven in large as an inflation-hedge; silver traded at $25.15/oz.
For more in-depth analysis of base and precious metals, please see our Quarterly Metals report.
All price data is from 21.03.2022 as of 17:30