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VRS - who has written 34624 posts on Opalesque Commodities Briefing.


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UAE support for oil price as demand picks up

Posted on 15 April 2014

Oil prices approaching US$110 a barrel are “acceptable” for producers and consumers, and Opec does not need to change its output target, said the UAE’s deputy energy chief. The group is scheduled to next meet in June in Vienna to debate its 30 million barrel per day (bpd) production ceiling, which has remained unchanged since December 2011.

Rising prices for natural gas put pressure on oil sands producers

Posted on 15 April 2014

Oil sands companies, which have benefited from years of low natural gas prices, are once again facing rising costs as the commodity they need to fuel much of their operations becomes more expensive.

Oil prices steady as Libya woes ease

Posted on 15 April 2014

Crude oil prices rose in early Monday trading amid tensions in Ukraine, but fell again after Libyan protesters ended their occupation of an oil port. The price of Brent crude futures briefly rose above $108 a barrel, but later fell back to $107.30.

Global coal demand growth slows slightly: IEA

Posted on 15 April 2014

Tougher Chinese policies aimed at reducing dependency on coal will help restrain global coal demand growth over the next five years, the International Energy Agency (IEA) says in its annual Medium-Term Coal Market Report.

Gold prices 2014: Do what Goldman does, not what it says

Posted on 15 April 2014

Goldman Sachs must really want to buy more gold; this week it repeated yet again its forecast for gold prices in 2014 to drop to $1,050 an ounce. That might sound contradictory at first, but not when it comes to Goldman.

Goldman Sachs keeps year-end gold target at $1,050

Posted on 15 April 2014

Goldman Sachs is keeping its year-end price target for gold at $1,050 an ounce, according to a recent research note — despite a nearly 2% gain in prices for the yellow metal over the past two weeks.

The current price of gold in April 2014

Posted on 15 April 2014

Gold is frequently viewed as insurance in moments of economic volatility or worldwide political turmoil. However, in 2013, gold prices dropped 24% against the U.S. dollar, marking gold’s third-worst decline since 1975. The drop turned many investors off to the yellow metal.

Gold: In search of a new standard

Posted on 15 April 2014

The London fix has been in place for almost a century but critics say the system needs reform. To supporters of the gold fixing, its longevity is a mark of its efficiency and utility. To a growing group of critics, however, the benchmark is opaque, old fashioned and vulnerable to market abuse.

Here’s what you need to know about today’s gold price surge

Posted on 15 April 2014

Demand for the lustrous metal has seen gold prices hit a three week high, with geopolitical risks seeing investors move towards the safe-haven asset. Seen as a hedge against inflation, other metals have also spiked as tensions over Ukraine heat up.

Will silver break free from the $20 price range?

Posted on 15 April 2014

The price of silver remained nearly unchanged during last week. On the other hand, gold bounced back following the release of the minutes of the last FOMC meeting. Will silver resume its rally anytime soon? Or will it tumble down? Let’s analyze the recent news that may affect silver and the silver ETFs.

Platinum may stage short-lived rally to $1,600/oz

Posted on 15 April 2014

The price of platinum could rally towards $1,600/oz if a 12-week strike over wages in South Africa persisted, but a significant cache of inventory would keep the metal on a tight leash.

China deal shows optimism over copper prices

Posted on 15 April 2014

It might not look like the time to be buying into copper: The price of the commodity has fallen 9.6% since the start of the year, in part because of concerns about China’s slowing economic growth. So why is a consortium led by a unit of China Minmetals Corp., a state-controlled miner, paying at least $5.8 billion for Glencore Xstrata PLC’s Las Bambas mine in Peru, one of China’s biggest mining acquisitions in years?

Nickel extends longest rally in 42 months after Goldman forecast

Posted on 15 April 2014

Nickel prices rose, extending the longest rally in 42 months, as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said the price is poised climb an additional 12 percent because of limited supplies.

China iron ore mountain a risk as financing crackdown bites

Posted on 15 April 2014

A crackdown in China on financing backed by commodities risks unleashing a flood of iron ore sales from tens of millions of tonnes of the raw material sitting at Chinese ports, raising the prospect of a renewed price slump.

As commodities surge take a look at industrial metals: Hoenig

Posted on 15 April 2014

Stocks have been taking a beating and the dreaded “correction” has been tossed around a lot. There is one group of assets however that are squarely in the middle of their own bull market - metals. Sure, gold and silver grab all the headlines, but industrial metals can make for some great investment plays too.

Market intel: The most richly valued ETFs

Posted on 15 April 2014

The spectrum shows the top eight most richly valued segments of the market. All of the funds on the list have a negative P/E ratio, meaning that, in aggregate, the portfolio companies lose money. In general, stocks and ETFs are richly valued (have high P/E ratios) when investors anticipate future earnings growth.

ETPs’ popularity spawns a proliferation of acronyms

Posted on 15 April 2014

In the passive world (and, in particular, ETFs), if there is a stock or bond index, it can be tracked – either physically by trackers buying up shares or synthetically through the purchase of derivatives.

EU promises ’strictest’ curbs on high-frequency trading

Posted on 15 April 2014

Michel Barnier says new rules will stop market abuse through high-speed trading. The EU’s financial chief has promised some of the toughest curbs on controversial use of high-frequency trading highlighted by author Michael Lewis in Flash Boys.

Global market for soy protein to witness 6.3% CAGR to $9214.4 mln in 2018

Posted on 15 April 2014

The global market for soy protein is expected to surge from $6,399.9 mn in 2012 to $9,214.4 mn in 2018. The industry is growing at a CAGR of 6.3% from 2013 to 2018. In 2012, North America dominated the global soy protein ingredients market. Because of rapid advancement and increasing demand from key countries such as China and India, Asia-Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing market in the near future.

China’s currency ceases to be a one-way trade

Posted on 15 April 2014

For years, betting on a rising Chinese yuan has been about as close as you could get to a sure thing in world financial markets.

Ukraine currency continues to slide

Posted on 15 April 2014

An escalation of tension in eastern Ukraine has sent the country’s currency on a fresh record-breaking slide. The National Bank of Ukraine set the official exchange rate for the currency at an all-time low of 12.97 against the dollar on Monday, according to Russian nongovernmental news agency Interfax.

EU nations said to set next carbon-market overhaul talks in June

Posted on 15 April 2014

European Union governments will hold further discussions in June about a proposal to make supply in the world’s biggest carbon market more flexible, according to two people with direct knowledge of the matter.

NZ emissions accelerating

Posted on 15 April 2014

New Zealand’s emissions of greenhouse gases grew 2.2 per cent in 2012, accelerating from 1.4 per cent in 2011. The increase, reported by the Ministry for the Environment in New Zealand’s greenhouse gas inventory, also exceeds the average since 1990, over which period the cumulative increase in emissions was 25 per cent.

Commodities: A lacklustre outlook?

Posted on 14 April 2014

Even though the main commodity index, the UBS Bloomberg CMCI Composite, has risen modestly recently there have been relatively few gains outside of agriculture. Indeed, it was the only main sector to show positive returns as continuing poor weather conditions led to further rises in many grain prices. Elsewhere, the only moves of note were a sizeable fall in copper and renewed weakness in the gold price.

Global commodity traders get deal fever

Posted on 14 April 2014

Big changes are under way among global energy and food commodity traders, with a flurry of first-quarter acquisitions and leadership moves that cover Asian, European and North American companies.

Iran challenges US sanctions with plans to double oil output by 2018

Posted on 14 April 2014

Country’s new oil minister has set a new output target of 5.7m barrels per day of crude within four years. Iran has unveiled plans to double its oil production by the end of the decade and, ignoring sanctions, pump billions of dollars of its currency reserves into developing its share of the world’s largest natural gas reservoir in the Persian Gulf.

Speculators boost bullish oil wagers on OPEC output drop: Energy

Posted on 14 April 2014

The group, which pumps about 40 percent of the world’s oil, reduced output to the lowest for March since 2011 as a standoff between the Libyan government and rebels kept exports near the lowest level since Muammar Qaddafi was driven from office.

IEA: Global oil supplies plunge in March on lower OPEC output

Posted on 14 April 2014

Global crude oil supplies fell month-on-month in March by a steep 1.2 million b/d to 91.75 million b/d, with a decline in output from members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries accounting for near 75% of the loss, according to the International Energy Agency’s most recent Oil Market Report.

U.S. crude reserves hit highest levels in nearly 40 years

Posted on 14 April 2014

New data from the Energy Information Administration shows that crude reserves in the U.S. hit their highest levels since 1976. The EIA released a report on April 10, entitled “U.S. Crude Oil and Natural Gas Proved Reserves (2012),” which indicated that 2012 marked the fourth year in a row that proven oil reserves increased.

Venezuela needs 2014 brent oil price of $121: Deutsche

Posted on 14 April 2014

Venezuela, holder of the world’s largest oil reserves, requires the price of Brent crude to average $121 a barrel this year, about $14 more than current prices, for the country’s government to balance its budget, according to Deutsche Bank AG.

OPEC oil production fell by 500,000 b/d in March

Posted on 14 April 2014

The commodities complex was relatively well supported on Thursday despite the wave of risk aversion that swept across other asset classes. Thus, for example, three-month copper futures actually finished the day higher by 0.6% to $6,636/metric tonne mark on the LME despite remarks from China’s Premier that the country will not embark on any significant stimulus to ward off a short-term economic slowdown.

Coal gasification: The clean energy of the future?

Posted on 14 April 2014

For this simple reason, it remains the world’s main source of power, providing a quarter of our primary energy and more than 40% of our electricity. And it will continue to do so for many years to come.

Gold bears bet wrong again as Fed talk favors bulls: Commodities

Posted on 14 April 2014

Bearish speculators misjudged gold bets again as the release of Federal Reserve minutes extended this month’s rally in bullion. Money managers cut their net-long position to the lowest since February in the week ended April 8. The minutes of the Fed’s March meeting the next day played down forecasts for higher rates, and gold had its biggest weekly gain in a month.

Gold should continue to slide

Posted on 14 April 2014

Over the first quarter of the year, gold prices benefited primarily from unexpected weakness in the US economy. Abnormally cold winters dampened economic activity, causing 10-year yields to drop 33 basis points to 2.75 per cent, reducing the opportunity cost of holding gold. At the same time, the dollar lost around one per cent, further contributing to higher dollar-denominated gold prices.

Who needs gold really?

Posted on 14 April 2014

People love to debate, but sadly sometimes it crosses a line and turns argumentative. That’s what is happening right now with the debate over gold. There have been several high-profile articles, most recently in the Wall Street Journal, saying you should eliminate gold as a worthwhile part of your portfolio. Primarily because of this year’s lower price.

Why the gold price per ounce is rebounding in 2014

Posted on 14 April 2014

The latest news regarding the gold price per ounce is looking much better than the end of 2013. In 2013, gold bugs saw the gold price dropping 24% against the U.S. dollar. It was the third-worst decline in the history of gold since the year 1975.

When investment bankers go wrong on Gold, Silver prices predictions

Posted on 14 April 2014

On average, every quarter we are exposed to yet another price guidance by a mainstream analyst. Such analysts usually reside within a large investment bank. These calls become focal points for a sector and often seem to carry with them some form of self fulfilling prophecy.

Silver being left behind in latest gold price surge – but don’t despair!

Posted on 14 April 2014

Silver investors will have been a little disappointed by the metal’s performance vis-a-vis the gold price following the latter’s gains after the release of the latest U.S. FOMC meeting minutes. The minutes suggested that the low interest rate regime may well continue longer than expected and resulted in a major boost to the stock market and a significant uptick in the gold price.

Gold Miners Index plays greater role in metals markets

Posted on 14 April 2014

The American GDX Gold Miners ETF is slowly becoming the de-facto standard for measuring gold-stock performance. Nearing its eighth birthday, GDX has even usurped the venerable HUI gold-stock index as this sector’s metric of choice in many circles.

China group buys $6bln Glencore Peru copper mine

Posted on 14 April 2014

A Chinese consortium is buying Glencore Xstrata’s copper mine in Peru in a $6bn (£3.6bn) all-cash deal, marking one of China’s largest mining acquisitions. The consortium is led by MMG Limited and includes China’s Citic Metal.

Zimbabwe: Commodities exchange boon to economy

Posted on 14 April 2014

The setting up of a vibrant Agricultural Commodity Exchange will be essential for Zimbabwe’s economic recovery as it has the capacity to stimulate the circulation of money, experts have said. A commodities exchange is an open and organised marketplace where ownership titles to standardised quantities or volumes of certain agricultural commodities are traded by its members.

India: Commodity trading hours set to get a ‘break’

Posted on 14 April 2014

Commodity derivative trading hours, on platforms such as MCX and NCDEX, may soon go in for a break. “We are planning to allow an hour or half-an-hour break for commodity trading as the trading hours are long,” Ramesh Abhishek, Chairman, Forward Markets Commission (FMC), told Business Line. FMC regulates futures trading in commodities.

Bloomberg takes over UBS commodities indices

Posted on 14 April 2014

Bloomberg has negotiated a strategic partnership with UBS to allow its index business responsibility for governance, calculation, distribution and licensing of the bank’s commodity indexes. From 1 July, the indexes will be renamed from the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Family to the Bloomberg Commodity Index Family.

Singapore maintains currency stance as economic growth slows

Posted on 14 April 2014

Singapore’s central bank maintained its pace of currency appreciation, seeking to support growth while guarding against inflation as the economy expanded less than analysts estimated last quarter.

Currency outlook: Dollar range-bound or breakout?

Posted on 14 April 2014

The US dollar had a difficult week last week. It lost ground against all the major currencies. Falling interest rates, sparked by the FOMC minutes that reassured investors that an early US rate hike is highly unlikely and a drop in the equity markets that wiped out the first quarter gains, appear to have been the main culprits.

UN urges world to intensify efforts to cut emissions

Posted on 14 April 2014

The world’s leading climate science body has released its second report in two weeks, this time outlining how the planet can avoid dangerous climate change. It’s found greenhouse gas emissions are at unprecedented levels, despite a growing number of policies to reduce climate change.

Australian carbon price scrapping seen as ‘backwards step’, says IPCC author

Posted on 14 April 2014

IPCC report says carbon pricing is ‘cost-effective incentive for everyone to look for their best option to lower emissions’. The international community believes Australia is taking a “backwards step” by scrapping carbon pricing, which is seen as a key tool in cutting emissions, according to an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change lead author.

Tight money policy: Outlook turns bearish for commodities

Posted on 11 April 2014

From the late 1990s until the financial crisis in 2008, most commodities experienced double-digit annual real (inflation- adjusted) price growth, a period known as the commodity “supercycle.” The cycle extended despite the fallout in the economy with the rapid increase in the liquidity and monetary easing called QE in the developed world led by the US and Japan. Now as the tide of liquidity turns, commodities need to return to demand-supply dynamics and prices should readjust to that.

Commodity funds bounce in Q1 after 2013 losses

Posted on 11 April 2014

Commodity funds bounced in the first quarter from a 2013 loss, with the top performers in the Lipper Global Commodity group racking up double-digit returns after rallies in agriculture, natural gas and nickel.

China March commodity imports resilient despite slowing economy

Posted on 11 April 2014

China’s imports of iron ore and copper soared in March from the previous month in anticipation of higher seasonal demand in the world’s top metals consumer, though crude oil shipments dropped after three months of high inbound volumes.

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