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VRS - who has written 40203 posts on Opalesque Commodities Briefing.


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Africa and commodity prices: No longer the kiss of death

Posted on 24 April 2015

In 2014 commodity prices tumbled. Many economists feared the worst for Africa. For decades the continent has been hopelessly dependent on commodities to power economic growth. When prices crashed, economies would go into tailspin. This time around, though, things seem different. The continent is holding up well.

Hedge funds bet big on oil price rally

Posted on 24 April 2015

Hedge funds have placed one of their largest ever bets on a rally in oil prices, just as evidence mounts that energy companies are hunkering down for a delayed recovery.

Strong demand to rebalance oil market by early 2016: Kemp

Posted on 24 April 2015

Global oil demand is set to rise by 1 million or even 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2015, according to a range of forecasters. Coupled with a fall in shale output in the second half of the year, as the decline in the U.S. rig count takes effect, that should be enough to bring the oil market near to balance by early 2016.

U.S. Shale Fracklog Triples as Drillers Keep Oil From Market

Posted on 24 April 2015

Think the U.S. is awash in crude now? Thank the fracklog that it’s not worse. Drillers in oil and gas fields from Texas to Pennsylvania have yet to turn on the spigots at 4,731 wells they’ve drilled, keeping 322,000 barrels a day underground, a Bloomberg Intelligence analysis shows. That’s almost as much as OPEC member Libya has been pumping this year.

Where should investors look when Oil recovers?

Posted on 24 April 2015

When oil prices recover-and plenty of analysts think the climb back up will start soon-Canada’s western frontier of Saskatchewan and neighboring Alberta will ’still have the edge’, according to a report from TD Economics. Depressed oil prices may have skewed the view from Canada’s oil-producing west, but this will be one of the better places to bet on the oil rebound.

Has China Doubled Its Gold Reserves? - IMF May Soon Find Out

Posted on 24 April 2015

Once again, speculation is cropping up regarding the size of China’s gold reserves and whether or not the People’s Bank of China has been bolstering its holdings in secret. According to data from the International Monetary Fund, China’s official gold reserves have not changed since 2009, standing at 1,054 tonnes.

Uranium outlook positive but perhaps not outstanding unless…

Posted on 24 April 2015

Uranium has been one of the best performing commodities over the past year, but only because it was rising from such a low level. So now what lies ahead? While the uranium price may well have been one of the best performing over the past nine months or so, it should be remembered that this is as a recovery from an all-time low price in real terms – but then such times may well prove to have provided the best opportunity to get back into the commodity.

Bullish Traders Are Turning To Rare Earth Metals

Posted on 24 April 2015

This past week many momentum traders have turned their attention to a niche corner of the commodity markets – rare earth metals. Companies that explore and or process rare metals are of specific interest to traders because of strong moves in a couple of the sector’s key players. Based on their respective chart patterns, active traders will likely add these stocks to their watch lists because they could be setting up for a continued move higher.

China’s aluminum set to worsen glut as export taxes removed

Posted on 24 April 2015

China, the world’s largest aluminum producer, may worsen a global glut of the metal as the government scrapped export duties for some products. The removal of fees to ship certain aluminum products may encourage further exports from the country that accounts for about half the world’s production. Global prices may sink as the move encourages producers to shift China’s aluminum glut overseas, according to Bloomberg Intelligence.

Aluminum leads metals lower as China manufacturing contracts

Posted on 24 April 2015

Aluminum fell the most in almost a month as most industrial metals retreated after a gauge of manufacturing strength slid to a 12-month low in China, the world’s biggest consumer. Aluminum lost as much as 1.2%, the biggest drop since March 27. HSBC Holdings and Markit Economics’ preliminary Purchasing Managers’ Index for Chinese manufacturing was at 49.2 for April, below the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey and the second month of contraction. Factory data for the euro region are due later in the day.

China’s molybdenum export tax removal to overshadow Japanese term talks

Posted on 24 April 2015

China’s removal of its export tax on molybdenum products from May 1 will overshadow term contract negotiations between Japanese steelmakers and overseas moly suppliers, industry sources said Thursday, April 23. Japanese moly term contracts typically run over a one-year period.

Copper: What’s in store for the metal in FY16?

Posted on 24 April 2015

Copper prices may remain under pressure as the new mine supply will exceed the rate of copper consumption by about 1.5% per annum. In India, domestic metal demand growth is likely for FY16.

Oil vs. Gas ETFs: Which One Should I Choose?

Posted on 24 April 2015

Energy is one of the last places an investor wanted to be over the past year. Many analysts are calling a bottom. This is often based on nothing more than oil and natural gas prices being low combined with an improving U.S. economy. As far as the latter is concerned, this trend is debatable. Though unemployment has improved, there is minimal wage growth.
Without wage growth, consumers save more and spend less. Additionally, the Baby Boomer generation is retiring in droves, and retirees tend to save more and spend less. Furthermore, [...]

How To Purchase Shares of an Exchange-Traded Fund in the Market

Posted on 24 April 2015

The rise in the popularity of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) is occurring, because investors are drawn to their lower fees, liquidity and ease of diversification. Although ETFs have been around since 1993, their attractiveness has soared in the past few years as more 401(k) and IRA plans are offering them as an option.

The CEW Emerging Market Currency ETF

Posted on 24 April 2015

If you would like to invest in emerging market currencies, take a good look at the Wisdom Tree Emerging Currency Strategy Fund (CEW) exchange-traded fund (ETF). That said, “invest” might not be the best word. With a 0.56% expense ratio, holding this ETF long term will eat into your profits.

How do you choose the right currency service?

Posted on 24 April 2015

The bank is not the only way to move your money around the world - here are the strengths and weaknesses of three money exchange options. The currency exchange market has changed beyond recognition over the past decade. It has responded to the changes in the way we live today: business is transacted across borders, and currencies need to be exchanged 24 hours a day.

Swiss left helpless in currency wars as franc surges

Posted on 24 April 2015

Switzerland is running out of ammunition to fight the global currency wars. In the three months since the Swiss National Bank scrapped the franc’s ceiling against the euro, it’s intervened in currency markets, cut interest rates and on Wednesday made more depositors subject to its negative rates. Yet the franc has still gained the most among its Group-of-10 peers this year, with traders positioned for further strength.

Asia’s environment: In need of a green revolution

Posted on 24 April 2015

The Asian economic miracle has lifted millions out of poverty, but at terrible cost. Deforestation and foul water are just two of the insults to nature resulting from breathless expansion. Air pollution in Beijing has been described by the American embassy as “crazy bad”. Asia is one of the biggest contributors to global warming.

Direct Action four times more efficient than ALP’s carbon tax

Posted on 24 April 2015

Environment Minister Greg Hunt may just have won the next election for the Coalition. He is going to cut Australia’s carbon emissions four times more than Labor did with its carbon tax at 1 per cent of the price per tonne of emissions cut under the carbon tax. He is now publicly confident Australia will “breeze past” its 2020 target of cutting emissions by 5 per cent on 2000 levels.

Continued Weakness in Commodity Markets May Signal Long Term Easing of Prices

Posted on 23 April 2015

Well-supplied markets are continuing to drive down prices of commodities, across the board, says the latest issue of the World Bank’s Commodity Markets Outlook (CMO). Most indices edged further down during the first quarter of 2015, with food down 7.3 percent, crude oil down 13 percent and metals down 9 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2014. Prices are expected to stay weak for the rest of this year, with only a marginal recovery expected in 2016.

World’s commodity trading houses have their sights set on Iran thaw

Posted on 23 April 2015

The world’s largest commodity trading houses are first in line to profit from the much expected return of Iran to global markets as Tehran and Washington enter into the final three months of nuclear talks. While the global oil industry has been seen as the biggest beneficiary of a thaw, commodities’ traders including Cargill, Glencore, Vitol, Trafigura and Louis Dreyfus Commodities have a long history in Iran, helping to export its oil and import daily basics like gasoline, wheat and rice.

The fossil fuelled economy

Posted on 23 April 2015

The price of oil has historically had a huge affect on the global economy but how does it impact on our lives in general? Our research has unearthed some fascinating facts in the event of oil price fluctuations. The impact of oil price changes meant average car insurance premiums increased by 2% (a whopping £12m) in the final quarter of 2014, which was the first quarterly increase since 2011.

Could The Oil Market Be In For A Quick Rebound?

Posted on 23 April 2015

A global oil glut led to the slump in oil prices over the last year. Yet some in the industry believe the turnaround could come much quicker than markets expect. Glencore chairman and Genel CEO Tony Hayward is particularly bullish. Though he thinks the oversupply in the market would likely take a year or two to work off, he predicts that cuts to oil companies’ capital spending are laying the seeds for the next oil price bull market.

Strong demand to rebalance oil market by early 2016

Posted on 23 April 2015

Global oil demand is set to rise by 1 million or even 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2015, according to a range of forecasters. Coupled with a fall in shale output in the second half of the year, as the decline in the US rig count takes effect, that should be enough to bring the oil market near to balance by early 2016.

Pricing Up Oil Worry on Shell’s BG Deal

Posted on 23 April 2015

What is a merger without a bit of arbitrage? Ask Royal Dutch Shell and BG Group. Pentwater Capital Management this week became the first big merger arbitrage fund to disclose a position in BG, after Shell’s $70 billion cash-and-stock deal to buy the U.K. oil and gas company.

Wall Street Bets on Oil Price Rally

Posted on 23 April 2015

If the whims of speculators are anything to go by, then oil markets are poised for a rebound. Data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission show that bullish positions on WTI have reached their highest levels in eight months. Speculators make bets on the price of crude — long or short — depending on where they think prices are heading. Not since the end of the summer in 2014 have so many investors put money on the line, betting on a price rise.

Is The Oil Price Now In A Big Gap For Investors?

Posted on 23 April 2015

Leading oil stocks have already run hard - over 100% off the bottom and some are even up Year-Over-Year. Tier 2 oil stocks started to move in last week’s rally - should they be bought? Euphoria may move the group, but quarterly financials could be a regular rude awakening.

The gold rush in Dubai

Posted on 23 April 2015

Stability in gold prices combined with festivals have led to brisk gold and diamond buying across the country. Retailers said the number of customers who buy gold and diamond jewellery has increased in the recent years. “We witness a surge in sale especially during occasions such as Akshaya Tritiya and Dhantheras. Diamond jewellery, especially rings and pendants have also become increasingly popular nowadays,” said a representative of Malabar Gold.

Gold seesaws around $1,200/oz

Posted on 23 April 2015

The gold market is stuck in a holding pattern. Gold for June delivery was little changed at $1,202.50 an ounce by 7:37 a.m. on the Comex in New York. Prices have alternated between daily gains and losses for the past week and a measure of 60-day volatility dropped to the lowest since November. Trading volume was 15 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day.

Gold down as investor indifference to bad news takes hold

Posted on 23 April 2015

Gold’s inability to break out of its recent $20 range could indicate that the market has become numb to bubbling geopolitical risk. Gold for June delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange was last down $4.20 at $1,198.90 per ounce. Trade has ranged from $1,197.70 to $1,204.40.

Bullion no more the sole attraction on Akshay Tritiya

Posted on 23 April 2015

Akshay Tritiya on Tuesday sent the cash registers ringing at city jewellery shops, which registered a 30-35% increase in business as compared to the festival last year. However, buyers’ preference for jewellery over bullion pointed to a shift in the trend seen in the last few years.

Iron Ore Price Outlook Cut by World Bank as Supplies to Expand

Posted on 23 April 2015

Iron ore will lead declines among metals this year as the biggest producers in Australia and Brazil expand low-cost supplies further while demand remains weak, according to the World Bank, which cut price forecasts.

Zinc bull story to keep rolling

Posted on 23 April 2015

Zinc has started to show signs of life again. In recent weeks the spot price of zinc crossed over $1/lb, up from a one-year low around 0.90/lb. It seems the prospect of a growing zinc deficit is back in play.

Commodity ETFs Starting to Turn Around

Posted on 23 April 2015

Some investors may be easing back into commodities and related exchange traded funds as a strengthening global economy, a slowing U.S. dollar and fall off in prices are enticing some bottom fishers. Over the past month, the PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (NYSEArca: DBC) added 3.8%, iPath Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Total Return ETN (NYSEArca: DJP) gained 2.2% and iShares GSCI Commodity-Indexed Trust (NYSEArca: GSG) increased 7.3%.

The Top 3 Silver ETFs

Posted on 23 April 2015

Silver, like gold, is a precious metal that also has industrial applications.. Silver Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) are pools of funds that enable traders and investors to gain exposure to silver ownership or price movement. Owning the physical commodity requires the owner to take delivery and store and secure the asset at additional costs and risks.

A Look at the Top 5 Performing Commodity ETFs YTD

Posted on 23 April 2015

Over the past month, certain corners of the commodity market have managed to claw their way back from steep declines; oil, gold, sugar, and copper have all posted solid gains in recent weeks. Below, we take a look at five of the best performing Commodity ETFs year-to-date, a few of which were the worst performers earlier in the year.

The Top Gold Mining ETFs

Posted on 23 April 2015

Gold mining attracts enormous retail trading interest, even though the gold bull market ended in 2010. The mystique of the yellow metal captivates market players seeking hedges against inflationary pressure, safe haven in turbulent times and speculative resource plays looking to profit from the most promising digging and extracting operations around the world.

Currency Manipulation: Yet Another Red Herring in the Trade Debate

Posted on 23 April 2015

The issue – or non-issue – de jour among parties to the free trade debate is currency manipulation by America’s potential trading partners. The U.S. auto industry and its defenders in Congress claim that Japan and some of the other countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, have a history of devaluing their currencies to the detriment of U.S. exports.

Authority calls for emissions cuts, but plays down the opportunities

Posted on 23 April 2015

Australia should cut greenhouse gas emissions by 30% below 2000 levels by 2025, according to a draft recommendation released by the Climate Change Authority today. Australia will need to put a solid emissions target for 2025 on the table for international credibility on climate change. The Authority’s recommendation is justified on principle but will likely be unacceptable to the government.

BlackRock says more commodities pain on the way for Australia

Posted on 22 April 2015

The steep slide in commodity prices has yet to take its full toll on the Australian economy, BlackRock Australia head of fixed interest Stephen Miller says. “I am a bit more negative on the economy than most,” Miller told The Australian Financial Review.

Expert: No conditions for oil price bouncing back to $100/barrel

Posted on 22 April 2015

There are no conditions to restore oil prices at their previous level of $ 100 per barrel or more in the short and medium term, Anton Soroko, analyst of Russia’s Finam Investment Holding told Trend April 21. “A qualitative breakthrough in the global GDP growth rates and the expansion of oil consumption are required to increase the oil prices up to $100-120 per barrel.

World Oil Price Reaches Minimum - Lukoil President

Posted on 22 April 2015

The world price of oil has hit a low end, Lukoil President Vagit Alekperov said. Global oil prices have dropped by some 50 percent since summer 2014, damaging economies heavily reliant on energy exports, including Russia. “I personally believe that the price has reached its minimum,” Alekperov said.

World’s Biggest Oil Trader Sees $50 Floor for Crude Prices

Posted on 22 April 2015

Vitol Group, the world’s biggest independent oil trader, said crude prices won’t drop below $50 a barrel for sustained periods because that’s a level some producers need in order to invest in new supply. Gunvor Group said a rout is over.

Oil unlikely to hit new 2015 lows, say traders

Posted on 22 April 2015

Oil prices could weaken again but they are unlikely to plumb new depths this year, leading commodities traders said on Tuesday, citing strengthening demand. Ian Taylor, head of the world’s largest oil trader, Vitol, told Reuters he thought global benchmark Brent crude oil, which tumbled 60% to just above US$45 (RM163) a barrel in January, could dip again briefly.

Oil Market Uncertain As US Shale Boom “Goes Bust”

Posted on 22 April 2015

Oil market is uncertain as the US shale oil output is expected to fall for the first time in four years, and the coming months are likely to see a continuing price war between OPEC producers. Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and HIS are now projecting that US oil production growth will now end. The global oil price rose slightly in the morning of April 14.

Gold loses its silver lining on Akshaya Tritiya, price drops on global cues

Posted on 22 April 2015

Gold prices fell by Rs 100 to close at Rs 27,100 per 10 grams at the bullion market today as the auspicious ‘Akshaya Tritiya’ festival failed to generate any substantial buying activity for the precious metal amid a weak global trend.

Is It a Good Idea to Buy Gold on Akshaya Tritiya?

Posted on 22 April 2015

India on Tuesday marks Akshaya Tritiya – a day considered as an auspicious time to buy gold. But is it? Sales of gold and silver usually shoot up every year on Akshaya Tritiya that usually falls in late April or early May and around which the World Gold Council has focused major marketing efforts in recent years.

Experts see gold prices trending to $1100/ounce

Posted on 22 April 2015

According to Victor Thianpiriya, commodity strategist, ANZ Research, gold will still make a positive investment over the next two -three years and global gold prices could head to USD 1100 per ounce levels over the next few months.

Platinum: The Best Buy in the Metals Sector

Posted on 22 April 2015

Precious metals are often misunderstood in the investment world. Most consider the three big metals – silver, gold, and platinum – interchangeable, since they tend to rise and fall as a group. But these metals are not created equal…

Price Forecast for Aluminum, Copper 2015

Posted on 22 April 2015

As we’ve heard many times before from our readers, conference attendees and loyal followers, “We’re not as interested in where metal prices have been, we’re much more interested in where prices are going.”

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