• Palladium hits highest level since 2001 after breaking above $1000
  • CAD and MXN drop as Nafta talks progress
  • Spanish stocks fall on more Catalan disputes
  • USD mixed despite Empire State beat

The start of the week has seen some strong gains for commodity markets with Palladium leading the charge higher. The precious metal moved above $1000 to trade at its highest level since 2001 whilst Gold has stood firm above $1300/oz. Oil prices are also moving higher with the latest security concerns in the Kurdistan region blocking the production of some 350k BPD of output and driving the price higher. 

Despite the gains for crude, the Canadian dollar is losing ground today with the latest developments in the Nafta talks seemingly not going the way of either Canada or Mexican (the peso is also firmly lower on the day). There are some interesting technical developments on the USDCAD pair at present with price moving above the 1.25 handle and the USDMXN is one of the best performing pairs from a USD perspective in the past month. 

Last week saw Spanish stocks recover following a sharp fall at the start of the month after Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont suspended the region’s independence declaration. The step was warmly welcomed by traders with the SPA35 surging higher into the close last Tuesday on what was seen as a key step to avert a major political fallout. However, Spanish stocks aren’t quite out of the woods yet with the government rejecting Puigdemont’s response to demands that he clarify his position on independence and today the SPA35 is a clear laggard amongst other indices

Friday saw a disappointing US CPI reading threaten to derail the recovery seen in the US dollar over the past month. On the data front today, the standout release is the Empire State manufacturing index which has come in at a 30.2 – its highest level in more than 7 years. The US dollar is trading fairly mixed on the day following the release with no clear overall sense of strength or weakness. 

In the crypto space there have been further gains seen today for most markets with XRPUSD leading the way in charging higher by as much as 10%. Bitcoin is also in the green but traders may heed some caution with a bearish engulfing candle on D1 drawn over the weekend reinforcing the importance of possible support at the all-time high of 5843.