Financial markets remain cautious as US election hangs in the balance

Bitcoin traded at $13,580 in the morning, representing a 3.3 per cent decline after briefly rising above $14,000

There is no clear winner yet in one of the tightest US presidential elections to date.

With polls now closed, President Donald Trump won a series of key swing states early this morning, including Florida, Ohio and Iowa, as Democrat rival Joe Biden expressed confidence he would prevail across key northern states, Arizona and Wisconsin, but is facing a much tougher fight than expected in Nevada.

Millions of votes are still being counted in the crucial swing states of Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Michigan, Wisconsin and others, which could still determine the outcome of the election. 

Trump earlier claimed victory and said he would launch a Supreme Court challenge, although election officials say it could be days before the winner in states where votes are still being counted is confirmed.

The uncertainty left Bitcoin trading at $13,580 in the morning, representing a 3.3 per cent decline on the day after briefly rising above $14,000. 

Bitcoin has seen losses in the past hour from $13,730 to $13,530, as Trump's threat to stop vote counting increased political uncertainty.

Futures on US benchmark indices rose and futures on the the S&P 500 rose 0.5 per cent, while those on the Dow Jones were last down 0.2 per cent. Futures on the technology-heavy Nasdaq 100 gained 2.4 per cent.

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The Mexican peso fell to its lowest against the dollar in a month, falling by around 2.7 per cent on the day, while the offshore yuan dropped 0.9 per cent.

The dollar strengthened, rising 0.4 per cent against the euro and 0.4 per cent against the Japanese yen.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei remained the strongest performer, closing up 1.7 per cent due to the weaker yen, while Seoul's KOSPI rose 0.8 per cent. The Shanghai Composite was up 0.2 per cent, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.1 per cent.

Oil was down following Trump’s victory claim and as global coronavirus cases surged with more restrictions and lockdowns in certain countries hitting demand prospects. 

West Texas Intermediate was down 15 cents, or 0.4 per cent, at $37.51 a barrel by 07:55 GMT. Brent crude was off by 8 cents, or 0.2 per cent, at $39.63, after trading between $39.85 and $40.80.

FURTHER READING: Trump vs Biden: millions vote as 2020 presidential race closes

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