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VRS - who has written 40596 posts on Opalesque Commodities Briefing.


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Shell still optimistic about oil price: chairman

Posted on 20 May 2015

Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSA) remains optimistic about the future of the oil price, despite its dramatic slump in recent months, Chairman Jorma Ollila told investors at the company’s annual general meeting Tuesday. “Volatility is a fact of life in our industry. It is what it is and we have to manage through it. Short-term movements in oil prices can be driven by perception and prices tend to overreact,” Ollila said, adding that “we have not changed our long-term planning assumptions.”

Moody’s Predicts Big Jump in Oil and Gas Defaults

Posted on 20 May 2015

So far oil and gas companies have largely weathered the sharp drop in oil prices with minimal carnage. But that carnage is coming, according to a new report from Moody’s Investors Service. Analysts at Moody’s predicts that the default rate for oil and gas companies with lower credit ratings — B2 or lower — could increase to 7.4% by March 2016 from 2.7%.

Oil to rebound further this year: Opec’s Kuwait official

Posted on 20 May 2015

Oil prices could continue to rebound in the second half of 2015 following signs of growth in demand and a drop in high-cost production, an Opec official said yesterday. “It is expected that a kind of a balance will exist in the oil market in the second half of 2015 which will support prices,” Kuwait’s governor at Opec Nawal Al Fuzai told reporters. “Prices are improving, growth in supplies from outside Opec - especially shale oil - is lower than before and demand is recovering.”

Libya’s NOC chief sees higher oil prices, not relying on OPEC

Posted on 20 May 2015

The head of Libya’s National Oil Corp (NOC) sees higher oil prices and said the company is working to boost output and regain market share taken by other producers. Speaking on a visit to London, NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanallah said he saw signs of oil demand increasing across the globe and a fall in the supply of shale oil in the United States.

Gold Price Trend Forecast

Posted on 20 May 2015

Now that Gold has pushed to a three month high, it’s clear that my bullish read of the Gold tape is at least partially correct. In the face of recent negative price action, I had managed to remain cautiously bullish given Gold’s position in a new Investor Cycle - it was far too early for Gold to be rolling over, even if it remained locked in an extreme bear market.

History Shows A Gold Bull Market Is Fast Approaching

Posted on 20 May 2015

Yearning for sunnier skies for your gold investments? How’s this sound…Gold in a decisive bull market, with the price steadily rising. Silver soaring and outpacing gold’s gains. Gold stocks rocking, erasing underwater positions and racking up the profits.

Survey: Will the Gold Price Hit $5,000?

Posted on 20 May 2015

Despite a ho-hum performance year to date for gold, Peter Schiff, chief executive officer at Euro Pacific Capital, is still betting on gold’s eventual climb to $5,000 an ounce. Schiff’s persistent call is more than 300% higher than Thursday’s settlement at $1,225.20 an ounce on Comex, which marked the highest close for the yellow metal since mid-February.

India moves closer to tapping 20,000-ton gold hoard

Posted on 20 May 2015

India will allow citizens to deposit gold with banks to earn interest as the world’s second-biggest consumer seeks to cut reliance on imports by tapping idle bullion lying with households. Individuals and institutions can deposit a minimum of 30 grams in the form of bullion or jewelry under a so-called gold monetization scheme, according to a draft document released by the government on Tuesday.

Palladium Gains From Environmental Rules

Posted on 20 May 2015

Among precious metals, palladium has rarely shone brightest for investors. Yet in recent weeks, the metal, used mostly in catalytic converters for cars, has been commanding more attention than gold, silver and platinum, its more glamorous counterparts.

Société Genéralé: Nickel Is the Best Commodity During El Niño

Posted on 20 May 2015

Commodity markets are bracing themselves for the El Niño phenomenon, a cyclical meteorological occurrence associated with above average water temperatures in the central and eastern Pacific region, like Southeast Asia and Australia.

China steel price slumps to 12-year low

Posted on 20 May 2015

Chinese prices of steel used mostly to build homes and offices fell to a 12-year low as peak construction season begins to ebb in the world’s biggest consumer. The average spot price of steel reinforcement bar, or rebar, dropped for a 10th day to 2,458 yuan ($396) a metric ton, the lowest level since January 2003, according to data from Beijing Antaike Information Development Co.

Iron ore price inquiry ‘good and normal’ says Andrew Forrest

Posted on 20 May 2015

As most Australians know, the price of iron ore has fallen massively, losing more than 60 per cent in the past year and a half and blasting a hole in the nation’s finances. That’s because demand from China has fallen. But the market is still heavy with supply.

Iron ore price below $US60 a tonne as declines accelerate

Posted on 20 May 2015

Iron ore has recorded its sharpest fall in weeks, as Canberra continues to mull whether or not to hold an inquiry into the activities of BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto. The price of iron ore delivered to the Port of Qingdao fell $US2.32, or 3.5 per cent, to $US58.53 per tonne on Monday.

Chinese metals hedge funds aim to lure Western investors

Posted on 20 May 2015

Chinese hedge funds, blamed for several routs in the metal markets in the past 18 months, are developing relations with Western investors as they stretch out beyond their home turf, an executive at London Metal Exchange broker Sucden said.

Islamic commodity trading getting a boost

Posted on 20 May 2015

Islamic commodity trading has become more popular in the financial world as of late because an accord seems to have been reached among scholars whether such commodity trading, which is conventionally done through futures contracts and not through the exchange of physical commodities, is permissible as per Islamic law.

Ruble Rebound Prompts Currency Purchases by Finance Ministry

Posted on 20 May 2015

Russia’s Finance Ministry joined the central bank in buying foreign exchange to take advantage of this year’s ruble gains after earlier efforts to stem the world’s biggest currency rally fell flat.

Debate Over Currency Cheating Intensifies in Trade Talks

Posted on 20 May 2015

Thirty-six years ago, Japan lowered import tariffs on foreign automobiles to zero, ostensibly opening the world’s fourth-largest auto market to full international competition. Yet United States automakers say 93 percent of the cars on Japan’s well-tended roads are still made in Japan by Japanese companies.

Confidence in Carbon Market set to continue

Posted on 20 May 2015

The renewed confidence in the carbon market seen in 2014 is set to continue throughout 2015 according to the respondents of the annual Point Carbon Market Survey from Thomson Reuters. This year’s results indicate that the increased confidence of 2014 shows no signs of slowing.

India: Javadekar raises concern on feasibility of carbon market mechanism

Posted on 20 May 2015

A proposal to have a global carbon trading mechanism or carbon tax and a “lean” negotiating draft by October saw India raising eyebrows at the St Petersberg Climate Dialogue that ended without meeting its objective of building a consensus on a draft for the Paris climate conference this winter.

Global Oil and Gas Sector M&A Activity Remains Sluggish

Posted on 19 May 2015

Various factors ranging from the lack of availability of quality assets to sellers holding out for better prices are coming together to paint a mixed mergers and acquisitions (M&A) picture in the oil and gas sector, according to industry experts.

Goldman cuts crude outlook and oil company forecasts

Posted on 19 May 2015

Goldman Sachs has cut its long-term crude oil price forecasts and recommended investors sell shares in two major oil companies, saying that improved U.S. shale efficiency and higher production from OPEC will more than cover future demand.

Oil prices to recover, says BHP

Posted on 19 May 2015

Cheap oil prices will not last for long, with significant rises to come in two to three years because of a lack of new discoveries, BHP Billiton’s petroleum boss says. Equally weak natural gas prices will take longer to bounce back though, according to industry leaders attending Australia’s largest oil and gas conference.

Iran deputy oil minister says OPEC unlikely to cut output

Posted on 19 May 2015

The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is unlikely to implement a production cut at its next meeting in June, a senior Iranian official said on Monday. Asked if OPEC would cut output at the upcoming June 5 meeting, Iran’s Deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi told Reuters: “I don’t think so.”

Oil price to reach $80 by 2017 – Iranian oil minister

Posted on 19 May 2015

Iran hopes its crude oil exports will be back to the pre-sanctions level of 2.5 million barrels per day (bpd) and the oil price to rise to around $80 a barrel by end of 2016, according to Iran’s Deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi.

Oil Falls as Bearish Fundamentals Outweigh Mideast Tensions

Posted on 19 May 2015

Oil prices edged lower Monday after Saudi Arabia posted its highest level of monthly exports in nearly 10 years and an Iranian official said OPEC would likely decide to keep production steady at its meeting next month.

Saudi oil exports hit highest in a decade

Posted on 19 May 2015

Saudi Arabia wasn’t bluffing. The Kingdom increased its oil exports to the highest level since 2005 in March, official data from the Joint Organisations Data Initiative (JODI) showed, as Opec’s most powerful member made good on its promise to try to take back market share from other producers, reports David Sheppard, deputy commodities editor.

Gold Trapped in Summer Doldrums Usually Means Volatile Wake Up

Posted on 19 May 2015

For gold traders, summer has come early. Just don’t book your trip to the beach yet. Prices have seesawed for the past two months, leaving the metal trapped in the tightest trading range in two years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg through the end of last week. That’s historically a sign of more volatility to come.

Traders warn on gold liquidity

Posted on 19 May 2015

A few years ago London’s precious metals traders would arrive at their desks to find the phones flashing. On the other end of the line were rival banks looking to buy and sell gold. Today, the trading floors are a lot quieter.

Central Banks Increase Demand for Gold

Posted on 19 May 2015

Gold has actually been one of the flattest and least volatile investments over the last couple of years. It has been bumping around the $1,200 per ounce price level, just recently getting above $1,220.

Q1 physical gold sales up 20% in Germany as gold price hits $1,233

Posted on 19 May 2015

Gold prices began the week at their best for three months and immediately bounced higher again to $1,233 an ounce with silver outperforming with higher percentage gains at $17.74. Meantime, the latest World Gold Council data revealed that the total demand for gold bars and coins was up by 20 per cent in Germany in the first quarter in a rush to get out of the then slumping euro.

Are precious metals breaking out?

Posted on 19 May 2015

There is some talk among traders about precious metals breaking out. Silver broke a trendline dating back to summer 2011 and will make its highest weekly close in more than three months. Gold will make its highest weekly close in three months and gold miners had a very strong week. However, do these moves really register as breakouts? Not quite yet, say the charts.

Finding Some Shine In This Gold Bear Market

Posted on 19 May 2015

Two factors drive gold: the Love Trade and the Fear Trade. In 1997 and 1998, the bottom of the emerging market meltdown took place. Four years later, we saw China and Asia starting to take off and GDP per capita rise. This is an important factor in this whole run-up that I would characterize as the Love Trade. A strong correlation is rising GDP per capita, and in China, India and the Middle East, they buy gold and many gifts of love.

Gold is now more important than ever

Posted on 19 May 2015

The race by the world’s central banks to debase their currencies means holding gold bullion is vitally important in the current environment, according to star manager Sebastian Lyon, chief executive at Troy Asset Management.

Will the Gold and Silver Surge Continue?

Posted on 19 May 2015

Gold started off 2015 with a bang as safe haven buying mainly due to an increase in currency volatility, uncertainly over Greece’s future in the euro zone and expected quantitative easing in Europe. However, the gains fizzled out as gold prices again dropped on strong U.S jobs. Following which, gold prices fell to new six-week lows as equities recovered on hopes that Greece would work out a deal with its creditors.

When will platinum react to its fundamentals?

Posted on 19 May 2015

Platinum, trading just shy of six-year lows and out of favour with investors, continues to defy logic given a fundamental supply deficit. Many delegates at this week’s London Platinum and Palladium Week here will therefore hope there are better times on the horizon.

LME nickel inventories at ‘turning point’: Norilsk Nickel

Posted on 19 May 2015

Russian metal producer Norilsk Nickel said Monday it expects high LME nickel inventories to be at a ‘turning point’ with a likely decrease in the near term. “We believe the stocks are going to come down and that this is going to drive the prices,” Norilsk Nickel First Deputy CEO Sergey Dyachenko said in an interview with Platts Monday.

The Complete Guide to Oil and Gas ETF Investing

Posted on 19 May 2015

Crude prices posted 46% annual loss in 2014; the biggest yearly fall since 2008. Such was the ferocity of the crash that last year’s three worst-performing stocks in the S&P 500 index were all energy companies - Transocean Ltd. (RIG), Denbury Resources Inc. (DNR) and Noble Corp. plc (NE), which were down approximately 63%, 52% and 49%, respectively. The broad-based S&P 500 index gained 11.5% over the same period.

Non-gold ETFs set to shine this year

Posted on 19 May 2015

The equity-linked and other non-gold related Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) have been attracting greater interest from investors during 2014-15 and this trend is likely to continue, according to experts. Gold ETFs on the other hand have lost their charm, thanks to the dip in gold prices.

Commodity ETFs vs Futures 2015 Returns

Posted on 19 May 2015

If you’ve been paying attention to the futures markets recently, you know that crude oil has rallied. Not back to the $100 range, but a 20% bounce from its low. We’re certainly due to another Crude Oil post, but it seems our “How to Play a Bounce in Oil (Hint: Not $USO)” post seems to be playing out nicely. December WTI is up 6.09% YTD and the $USO ETF is only up 0.74% {Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results}.

Hedge funds dumping oil position as OPEC may raise supply level

Posted on 19 May 2015

Hedge funds and oil speculators are losing faith in the oil rally on concerns the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will increase supply to its highest level since 2012, according to Bloomberg. Data from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) shows that hedge funds’ net-long position in West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell 2.1%.

Hedge funds ‘may cover more shorts in wheat, but not sugar’

Posted on 19 May 2015

Investors noted scope for further short-covering in wheat derivatives, after hedge funds eased back from a record bearish position, but raised doubts over the appetite for extending a large positive shift in raw sugar.

Asian currencies tripped up by global bond rout

Posted on 19 May 2015

Just in time for the summer holidays, the price of an ice-cold Thai beer is tumbling. Over the past month, the baht has fallen 2.9 per cent against the US dollar and 7.9 per cent against the euro, making it the world’s worst performing currency. Last week it dropped as low as Bt33.7 per dollar, a level last seen during the financial crisis in 2009.

Poll: Which EM currency would you buy?

Posted on 19 May 2015

Most emerging market currencies have staged a comeback in recent weeks, as the greenback weakened broadly after soft economic data fueled speculation that the U.S. Federal Reserve may leave interest rates lower for longer.

Backloading slightly reduces EU 2014 C02 permit surplus: Commission

Posted on 19 May 2015

A surplus of European Union carbon permits for 2014 has gone down by around 0.03 billion to 2.07 billion due to a reduction in auction volumes through a process known as backloading, the European Commission said on Monday.

Emissions trading: 2014 data shows emissions reduction

Posted on 19 May 2015

Emissions of greenhouse gases from installations participating in the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) are estimated to have decreased by about 4.5% last year, according to the information recorded in the Union Registry.

The real El Niño risks an upset to commodities markets

Posted on 18 May 2015

Commodity investors are in a twist about the weather. Warmer ocean temperatures last spring indicated an El Niño event was on the horizon, signaling buys, sells, and hedging positions in securities linked to products impacted by storms and droughts. Everything from sugar prices to coffee futures were retooled.

Rethinking Commodity Trade Finance

Posted on 18 May 2015

Is traditional commodity finance dying? Has the slack been taken up or is the commodity finance market underfunded? Are producers and traders getting the right products at the right prices? These are just some of the question we would like you to help us answer in our 2015 Commodity Finance Survey.

Hope of $100 per Barrel Oil Price Dims

Posted on 18 May 2015

Ahead of the June 2015 meeting of energy ministers of member countries of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna, Austria, there are indications that the oil cartel may have given up hope of any near upsurge and significant rebound in the global prices of crude oil. Also, Nigeria’s oil output recorded a marginal decline for the month of April.

Oil price will break $70 barrier next winter: Expert

Posted on 18 May 2015

The subsidies bill for petroleum products will drop in fiscal year 2014/2015 to nearly EGP 60bn compared to EGP 100bn especially allocated from the state’s budget, according to petroleum expert Mohamed Shoaib’s predictions.

Oil Investors Take a Closer Look at Production

Posted on 18 May 2015

A spotlight has landed on a previously overlooked metric as oil traders drill deeper for clues on price movement. A spotlight has landed on a previously overlooked metric as oil traders drill deeper for clues on price movement.

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