UK Starts Mass Vaccination
S&P 500 futures are losing ground in premarket trading as traders are worried about the recent developments on the coronavirus front.
Today, Britain began mass vaccination. The initial shot was given to a 90-year-old grandmother. Britain is using Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine which was approved a week earlier. China and Russia have also begun vaccinating their citizens, but they have initiated vaccination programs before the completion of final trials of their vaccines.
However, vaccine optimism is offset by worries about near-term economic problems caused by the spread of the virus.
U.S. lawmakers continue to negotiate the next coronavirus aid package at a time when the economic recovery is slowing down due to the second wave of the virus. If Republicans and Democrats fail to reach a compromise deal, the market will likely find itself under pressure.
Brexit Drama Continues
News from Britain are set to dominate the agenda for global markets today as the country continues its challenging negotiations with the EU in addition to the start of its vaccination program.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has recently stated that Britain should be prepared to end trade talks. However, he continued to prepare to his upcoming negotiations with the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen.
A no-deal Brexit could push stocks down from recent highs so traders will have to watch this story closely. Brexit fears have already put some pressure on GBP/USD but hopes for a deal provided some support for the British pound. Most likely, Brexit will remain a source of volatility for global markets in the upcoming trading sessions.
Oil Moves Lower Amid Virus Fears
Many oil-related stocks are losing ground in premarket trading as oil failed to settle above the $46 level and is trying to get closer to the $45 level amid virus fears.
While markets eagerly await mass vaccination in developed economies, the near-term situation remains worrisome. At this point, it looks like the Northern Hemisphere is set for a very challenging winter, and the spread of the virus will put pressure on demand for oil.
At the same time, vaccine optimism may still provide sufficient support at the key $45 level. A move below this level will likely lead to a sell-off in oil-related equities.
For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.