European equity markets continued their strong upside momentum in today’s trading session despite a bearish announcement from the IMF which cut the global growth forecast for 2015 to 3.5% down from 3.8% initially projected in October. However, the CAC, IBEX and London equity benchmark index rallied strongly adding between 0.5% and 1.5%, while the DAX index just edged higher towards 10,270.
On the other hand, the US equity markets remained under pressure as the Dow Jones index retreated over 100 points (-0.65%) below 17,400 at the time of writing, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq also followed the downtrend posting renewed losses in the first trading session of the week.
Precious metal prices climbed higher following the IMF announcement. Gold rallied over 1.2% towards the key area of $1,300/ounce, while silver surged near 1% to retest $18. Platinum and palladium prices were also up on the day.
The recent US dollar strength continues to weigh on market sentiment, adding pressure to most commodity prices. The USD index rallied above 92.85 against a basket of currencies, while the euro slid lower and plunged towards 1.155 against the dollar.
Crude oil prices remained under heavy pressure with WTI front month futures retreating over 4% towards $46 per barrel amid renewed concerns regarding a slowdown of global oil demand after the IMF cut its global growth forecast by most in three years. In base metals, copper managed to hold around $5,680 while aluminium continued its strong rally adding 1.2% towards $1840.