Commodity prices soared today as fears of shortages spook the markets:

  • Nickel rose 76% to close to $51,000 a tonne
  • Crude oil jumped to a high of $130 before coming back down but is still up $4.20 or 3.54%
  • Wheat closed up limit for the 6th day in row and trades at 14 year highs
  • Gold broke above $2000 for the first time since the week of August 17, 2020. The price got within $73 of its all time high of $2075
  • Palladium futures moved to a new all time high.

Increasing bombing of citizens, lack of progress on talks and an additional global push for economic sanctions including a bi-paritisan bill in the US to halt import of Russian. ALthough, Europe cannot go so far given the increased reliance on Russian oil currently, they are becoming more and more vocal about the need to divorce ties with Russia including their reliance on Russian oil

The impact of the sharp moves will be felt in inflation around the globe and could lead to stagflation as growth slows.

US stocks reacted negatively with the major indices closing at session lows and down from -2.3% to -3.6%. The final numbers show:

  • Dow fell -797.42 points or -2.37% at 32817.39
  • S&P fell -127.78 points or -2.95% at 4201.10
  • Nasdaq fell -482.47 points or -3.62% at 12830.97
  • Russell 2000 fell -49.57 points or -2.48% at 1951.32

The European shares had lower lows but did rebound most of the declines. The German Dax, France CAC, Spain's Ibex and Italy's MIB were each down from -5.01% (for German Dax) to -6.25% (for Italy's FTSE MIB) at session lows but closed well off those intraday lows.

Below are the highs, lows, closes and changes in points and percentages for the major European and US stock indices.


IN the US debt market today, the focus returned to concerns about inflation vs the flight to safety flows. The yields along the yield curve were up the most in the shorter end where the 2 year yield moved up about 6 basis points. IN contrast, the 30 year yield was up 2.9 basis points.

US yields

The run higher in yields helped to propel the USD higher as well today. The greenback is closing as the strongest of the majors while the CHF is the weakest. The CHF was weak today after the SNB hinted of potential intervention after the EURCHF moved below the parity level (low reached 0.9971). That led to a move up to 1.0099, but sellers reentered and pushed the price back to 1.0040 at the close.


On the economic calendar, the only release was consumer credit which came in weaker than expectations for the 2nd month in a row. It was a January number but with stocks back down, prices up, it makes you wonder if the consumer is not feeling all that great. Still early, but the shifts are taking place with the world order of things. All it takes is one bad apple and that apple is certainly upsetting the whole apple cart in differing degrees (with the displaced and invaded people of Ukraine taking the biggest hit).

PS The Fed is in the quiet period ahead of their interest rates decision that will take place on March 16.