European equity markets opened in positive territory this week, with the CAC, DAX, IBEX and London equity benchmark indices gaining between 1.0% and 2.5%. The euro edged higher within the recent range and hovered around 1.058 against the US dollar. The USD index slid slightly lower towards 99.50 against a basket of currencies, providing some support to commodity prices.
Base metal prices were fairly mixed in afternoon’s session with copper hovering around $5855 and aluminium consolidating near $1770, at the time of writing. In addition, nickel (-0.95%) and lead (-1.7%) remained under pressure. However, in London, BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Antofagasta and Fresnillo gained between 0.30% and 1.75%.
Precious metal prices slid lower as investors’ appetite increased in global equity markets. Gold posted fresh losses retreating towards $1150/ounce and silver slid lower to retest $15.50.
Crude oil prices plunged in today’s session amid ongoing concerns over bearish oil fundamentals. WTI front month futures sunk over 3.3% towards $43 per barrel, hitting their lowest level since March 2009, while Brent futures followed the downtrend and retreated over 3% towards $52.50 per barrel. BP and Tullow Oil remained under pressure after falling sharply 0.55% and 6.3%, respectively.