- U.S. stocks pulled back from a record rally with the S&P 500 (-0.06%) and tech-centric Nasdaq Composite (-0.34%) down while the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average (+0.20%) was up slightly as investor assessed the effect of a cold snap across the U.S. on coronavirus vaccinations.
- Asian markets were a mixed bag, taking their cue from Wall Street.
The benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield touched 1.330%, the highest since February 2020 (yields rise when bond prices fall) as investors grew confident of the Biden administration’s ability to pass fiscal stimulus.
- The dollar strengthened against most of its major peers.
- Oil slipped overnight, with the earlier turmoil caused by the cold snap starting to wane as March 2021 contracts for WTI Crude Oil (Nymex) (-0.58%) fell below US$60 to US$59.70.
- Gold fell with April 2021 contracts for Gold (Comex) (-0.58%) at US$1,788.50 and crucially below the US$1,800 level again as the dollar gained.
- Bitcoin (+3.36%) recovered some lost ground after it fell below US$50,000, settling at US$49,334 with inflows into exchanges leading outflows on the back of greater profit taking (inflows typically suggest that traders are looking to sell Bitcoin in anticipation of lower prices).
For millions of Americans in the midwest, someone must have left the freezer door open because Texas is colder than Alaska right now and the region is suffering a confluence of unfortunate circumstances.
Yet somehow the cold (which is great for storing but not transporting Pfizer-BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine) has not turned investors off of economically-sensitive stocks, which rely more heavily on the economy to be open again.
Markets are moving away from growth to value, in what has been called the “re-flation” trade that is powering assets tied to economic growth and inflation, including commodities and sectors more exposed to the broader economy as bond yields edged up.