After a long downswing, commodity prices saw a small uptick last week, according to IHS Markit Materials Price Index (MPI). Overall prices rose 1.3%, with eight out of ten components experiencing an increase.

"Oil was the big story last week," says William May, senior economist at IHS Markit. Oil rose 18.3% following a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that indicated action regarding the global oversupply of oil. Lumber also rose significantly, at 11.5%, due to signs that the U.S. lock down may end earlier than expected. Fiber prices increased 6.2% following seven weeks of downturn while ferrous prices rose 0.7%.

"Improving market sentiment is keying off encouraging signs in several countries that the number of new COVID-19 cases are slowing," May says, but cautions that "we may be nearing a bottom, but conditions will be far from normal for some time yet."