The risk sentiment remains tepid starting out a fresh week on Monday, as investors turn cautious amid surging covid cases in Asia, inflation concerns, weekend’s crypto crash and China’s pledge to curb industrial metals’ prices. However, fading Fed’s tapering expectations offer some support.

Asian equities traded mixed while the US stock futures held onto the recent advance. Looking ahead, most major European markets are closed in observance of Whit Monday, except for the UK and France, which is expected to see light trading conditions.

Across the G10 fx space, the US dollar is on the defensive alongside the Treasury yields, driving EUR/USD towards 1.2200. GBP/USD rises above 1.4150 as traders shrug off concerns over the UK reopening amid a rapid increase in the Indian covid strain.

AUD/USD has flipped to gains on the 0.7700 level despite falling iron-ore and copper prices. The kiwi advances towards 0.7200, helped by strong New Zealand’s Retail Sales data.  

Gold is closing in on the previous week highs of $1890, with eyes set on the $1900 mark. WTI briefly recaptures $64 after a potential snag in Iran nuclear deal talks.

The cryptocurrency market is licking wounds after another downswing witnessed on Sunday. Bitcoin is hovering around $35,000, having tested the $31K level a day before.

Amid a data-light calendar, speeches by BOE Governor Bailey and Fed officials will be closely followed.