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


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Oil just hit $56 — its highest price in 2015

Posted on 16 April 2015

Oil peaked above $56 for the first time in 2015 on Wednesday. It’s the fifth straight day the price for a barrel of oil has nudged up. Investors are cheering and buying energy stocks while American drivers are cringing at the prospect of higher costs at the pump.

IEA Says Oil Market Recovery Could Be Delayed

Posted on 16 April 2015

The prospect of Iranian crude oil flooding the market and Saudi Arabia pumping at near-record levels could delay a recovery in an oil market slammed by a historic price collapse, the International Energy Agency said.

Saudi Arabia Leads OPEC Oil Boom as U.S. Shale Growth Slows

Posted on 16 April 2015

Saudi Arabia pumped close to a record amount of crude oil last month, leading the biggest surge in OPEC output in almost four years just as the U.S. shale boom shows signs of slowing, the International Energy Agency said.

Russia in Active Consultations with OPEC

Posted on 16 April 2015

Russia is conducting “unprecedentedly active” consultations with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries but isn’t discussing oil production cuts to support prices, Russian officials said on Wednesday.

Asia set to muscle out Europe in gold trading

Posted on 16 April 2015

Asia can surpass Europe as the centre of gold trading, Intercontinental Exchange’s John Ho told delegates at the Dubai Precious Metals Conference, with Dubai potentially integral to this shift. “People believe that the Asian time has come, that trading in Asia is now and it needs to happen in an Asian time zone,” he said. “Europe is over, Asia is now.”

BofA Merrill Lynch: Gold “could rise to $1,500/oz by 2017″

Posted on 16 April 2015

Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) analysts believe the worst may be over for gold. According to a recent report, they see gold reaching $1,500/oz. by 2017. At the same time, a global BofAML survey revealed concerns of overvaluation in the equity and bond markets. A press release on the survey reads: “Bonds Seen as Most Overvalued in Survey’s History”

Gold Bullion To Max Out At $5,000 Per Ounce

Posted on 16 April 2015

Renowned financial analysts and trends forecaster Martin Armstrong has said that gold will “probably max out at $5,000 per ounce” as “people lose confidence in government” and that we will see riots and unrest globally in the coming months – the fall of this year.

What will happen to gold price after Greek exit

Posted on 16 April 2015

New study shows Greek bond yields as proxy for euro-zone break-up risk is more reliable than the strength of the US dollar in predicting the gold price. The real possibility of a Grexit is back on the cards. And with it a resurgent gold price.

Indian gold market subdued, premiums low and likely to stay so: sources

Posted on 16 April 2015

The Indian gold market is not expecting any fireworks in terms of premium business in 2015, with most participants downbeat, expecting premiums to trade in a tight range of $1-$2/oz above the dollar spot price, sources said this week.

Copper supply surplus to widen to 399,000 mt in 2015: GFMS

Posted on 16 April 2015

Rising production and softer demand growth should see the copper market register a 399,000 mt surplus this year, up from a surplus of 316,000 mt in 2014, Thomson Reuters GFMS said Wednesday. “We do not expect a pick-up in prices of note until the latter half of 2015,” GFMS said in its Copper Survey 2015, though it added: “Wild cards remain and include supply-side surprises, with producers perhaps cutting back from planned targets, while China’s state stockpiler could be active again in the current year.”

Copper may fall below $5,000/t next year: BofAML

Posted on 16 April 2015

Copper prices have fallen YTD, despite significant production disruptions. This suggests that the commodity is on track to move into surplus and BofAML see prices fall below $5,000/t ($2.26/lb) next year. Copper has been the underperformer in the base metals complex since the beginning of 2014. This is heavily influenced by an unfolding switch in market balances from deficits to surpluses.

ETFs: Is Window For Currency Hedge Closed?

Posted on 16 April 2015

Last year the ETF industry launched 10 currency-hedged exchanged traded funds, doubling the total number available, in time to maximize their potential against the falling yen and the euro. But some are now beginning to wonder if the strategy these ETFs follow has hit its sell-by date and the currency hedge is no longer needed.

Low costs and liquidity lure investors to ETFs

Posted on 16 April 2015

Investors and their advisers have been turning to exchange-traded funds over recent years thanks to their low-cost nature, Rachel Lord has claimed. The head of Europe, the Middle East and Africa for iShares – part of asset manager BlackRock – said that as the product gained more traction in the UK, it would not be long before the European ETF industry, including the UK, hit its milestone of £680bn (US$1trn) of assets under management.

Are Low-Risk High-Yield Investments Real?

Posted on 16 April 2015

The low-risk, high-yield investment—it’s the Holy Grail of finance, or perhaps more aptly, the perpetual motion machine. One that rewards its holder out of proportion to the danger of holding it. But is there indeed such a thing as a vehicle that can combine the returns of a Lotto ticket with the safety of a Series I savings bond?

Heartwood invests in commodities after two year hiatus

Posted on 16 April 2015

Heartwood Investment Management has bought back into commodities after years of ignoring the sector. Its investment manager Jade Fu said he had not had any direct exposure to commodities, such as oil or gold, on his multi-asset portfolios for more than two years.

Greenback remains best currency bet, says BNP

Posted on 16 April 2015

The US dollar remains the best bet in currency markets this year as the Federal Reserve splits from global peers and moves closer to raising interest rates, according to BNP Paribas.

A New Competitor for Bitcoin Aims to Be Faster and Safer

Posted on 16 April 2015

A Stanford professor claims to have invented a Bitcoin-like system that can handle payments faster and with more security. The total value of the digital currency Bitcoin is now approximately $3.4 billion, and many companies and investors are working to prove that the technology can make financial services cheaper and more useful.

National carbon trading market to launch in China in 2016

Posted on 16 April 2015

At a forum held in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province on April 8, China was said to be readying itself to kick off a national carbon trading market in 2016, with insiders estimating it will reach 100 billion yuan (US$16.1 billion) annually, an official in charge at the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) stated, according to Guangzhou’s Time Weekly.

Big business using trade groups to lobby against EU climate policy

Posted on 16 April 2015

When we embarked on our research into how trade groups are lobbying on EU climate policy, we knew trade associations were likely to be influential. However, we were surprised at just how important they are to companies, and how ferociously opposed some have been to recent progressive European Union climate policies.

Circular economy could bring 70 percent cut in carbon emissions by 2030

Posted on 16 April 2015

Odds are, your mobile phone is less than two years old. Today’s economy is built on a “fast turnover” principle. The faster we replace our gadgets the better – not only our phones, but most items we consume.

Next commodity boom a generation away, says Deltec

Posted on 15 April 2015

The next commodities boom is “a generation away” for some key raw materials, and it is the commodity economies – such as Australia – that will provide the more compelling tactical opportunities to go short as the bubble deflates.

Commodities squeeze growth

Posted on 15 April 2015

Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is expected to slow to 4% this year, from 4.5% in 2014 on the back of falling commodity prices before picking up moderately next year, according to World Bank projections. This is while problems in the electricity sector continued to curtailed South Africa growth. The World Bank insisted that oil exporters such as Angola and Nigeria, were especially hard hit by sharply lower oil prices.

Why India should be wary of Commodity shocks?

Posted on 15 April 2015

Without further fiscal reforms, the Indian government may find it difficult to sustain the increase in public investment spending, according to a report, titled “India’s Fiscal Roadblocks Could Stall Infrastructure Progress,” that Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services published today.

IMF: oil price collapse will cripple North Sea producers

Posted on 15 April 2015

Fund’s analysis suggests industry’s crisis is worse than feared, as IMF claims oil price slump has hit UK “earlier and more intensely” than in other countries. Britain’s oil industry faces a deep and long-lasting crisis, according to the International Monetary Fund, which said the collapse in oil prices would stifle investment and hit production at a much faster pace than other countries.

Oil price could recover to $70 per barrel by year end: Fitch

Posted on 15 April 2015

Crude oil prices could rise quickly in the second half of the year and may reach $70 per barrel by the end of 2015 as US shale production tapers and seasonal variations increase demand, a top analyst at ratings agency Fitch said on Tuesday.

US Shale oil production may have maxed out - EIA

Posted on 15 April 2015

The shale oil boom may be over, judging from the latest report from the US Energy Information Administration, which said oil output from America’s seven most productive shale formations will decrease for the first time in four years.

Iran Oil Minister Wants OPEC to Cut Output by 5% Ahead of June Meeting

Posted on 15 April 2015

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh on Tuesday called on the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to reduce production by at least 5% to boost prices that have collapsed since last summer, signaling the possibility of another tense meeting when the organization gathers in June.

Don’t expect OPEC to budge on Iran’s call for oil-output cuts

Posted on 15 April 2015

A call for the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to cut production helped rally prices on Tuesday. But the request from Iran isn’t likely to sway the crude-oil cartel, experts say.

Look out OPEC! Oil ETF investors head for exit, risking new slump

Posted on 15 April 2015

Oil investors who amassed a $6 billion long position in exchange traded funds, occupying as much as a third of the U.S. futures market, are now racing for the exit at a near record pace.

Global gold market to consolidate in the long term

Posted on 15 April 2015

The global gold market will likely continue to consolidate in the long term as volatility in the greenback will boost the metal’s prices. “This is given the US Federal Reserve’s (Fed) hesitation in raising interest rates,” said international foreign exchange broker ForexTime Ltd’s chief market analyst, Jameel Ahmad.

Any gold price rally will be sweet but short

Posted on 15 April 2015

On Monday gold for delivery in June – the most active futures contract – drifted further below the psychologically important $1,200 an ounce level, briefly falling to levels last seen at the beginning of the year. On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold touched an intraday low of $1,183.70 an ounce before recovering to above $1,190 during late afternoon trade, a two week low.

Gold Market Is Becoming Very Data Dependent and Reactionary

Posted on 15 April 2015

Gold has come back down below the key technical and psychological level of $1,200 where it has been trading range bound around all year. Tom Vitiello of Aurum Options Strategies tells TheStreet’s Jill Malandrino that gold is becoming more data dependent and reactionary.

Chinese steel mills cut ferrous scrap buying prices

Posted on 15 April 2015

The steel mills in Eastern China have announced further cut in ferrous scrap purchasing prices. The cut comes in the light of declining rebar and iron ore prices. Sources indicate that Jiangsu Shagang Group announced cut of Yuan 30 per mt on Saturday. The company had earlier lowered its scrap purchasing prices by Yuan 30 per mt last Sunday.

Base Metal Mining M&A Activity Expected to Make a Turnaround This 2015

Posted on 15 April 2015

Base metal mining companies have been wary of acquisitions in the past few years due to global financial crisis and economic downturn. These companies have bought fewer assets that require large capital investment since 2012.

ETFs vs. mutual funds: Which is more cost effective?

Posted on 15 April 2015

The last five years have been very good for diversified common-stock portfolios with mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). The annual costs for both types of fund have never been lower. This has certainly made it easier for investors to have excellent results.

ETFs expand into Bitcoins

Posted on 15 April 2015

WinklevossBitcoin Trust Exchange Traded Fund (ETF), which will track the performance of Bitcoins, the most talked about digital currency, will be available to investors later this year. Launched by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss – the twins who worked with Mark Zuckerberg in the early stages of Facebook – the ETF is currently in the process of regulatory approval.

F.M.I. offers sustainability guide for commodities

Posted on 15 April 2015

The Food Marketing Institute has launched its “Sustainable Sourcing Guide for High-impact Commodities,” which is designed for retailers. The guide focuses on such commodities as sugar cane, cocoa, paper/pulp, coffee, soy, palm oil and beef.

IMF says currency shifts support global economic growth

Posted on 15 April 2015

Recent shifts in exchange rates should help the global economy, boosting Japan and Europe in particular, amid increasing divergence in the growth paths of the world’s major economies, the International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday.

Russian ruble becomes world’s best-performing currency

Posted on 15 April 2015

Between early February and early April 2015, the Russian ruble gained 22.3 percent against key benchmarks, making it the world’s best-performing currency. Experts are not yet convinced that this impressive strengthening of the ruble will become a long-term trend: in December 2014, the Russian currency lost about half of its value against the US dollar and the euro.

The provinces get it: Carbon pricing can be simple and efficient

Posted on 15 April 2015

Globally, some 40 national jurisdictions have implemented, or are scheduled to implement, some form of carbon pricing to combat climate disruption. Carbon pricing unleashes market forces to lower greenhouse gas emissions. Instead of governments picking solutions, the market does.

China commodities imports resume after holiday but demand weak

Posted on 14 April 2015

China’s commodities imports generally rose in March on a month earlier as shipments resumed after the Lunar New Year holiday, but analysts pointed to still weak demand for goods ranging from iron ore to coal and soybeans. Overall trade data showed China’s total exports shrank 15 percent in a surprise drop that will exacerbate concerns about the slackening Chinese economy.

World Bank says sharp slowdown in China would hurt NZ, Australia

Posted on 14 April 2015

A sharp slowdown in China would hurt commodity exporting countries like New Zealand and Australia and spill over into Pacific Island countries, the World Bank says in its latest East Asia Pacific Update. The global institution yesterday lowered its 2015 growth forecast for China, Asia’s largest economy, to 7.1 percent from a previous estimate of 7.2 percent, and its 2016 estimate to 7 percent from 7.1 percent.

Why prefer commodities over commodity manufacturers

Posted on 14 April 2015

Owning commodities allow investors to take exposure to the commodity he has a view on. Investing in shares of commodity manufacturing companies lead to exposure to many factors such as broader equity market sentiment, company fundamentals.

Canada’s economy is a disaster from low oil prices

Posted on 14 April 2015

Low oil prices are threatening the health of Canada’s oil and gas sector, which in turn, is causing turmoil in Canada’s economy as a whole. The fall in oil prices is forcing billions of dollars in spending reductions for Canada’s oil and gas industry.

Shale Oil Boom Could End in May After Price Collapse

Posted on 14 April 2015

The shale oil boom that pushed U.S. crude production to the highest level in four decades is grinding to a halt. Output from the prolific tight-rock formations such as North Dakota’s Bakken shale will decline 57,000 barrels a day in May, the Energy Information Administration said Monday.

Oil Bulls Boost Wagers by Most Since 2010 as Output Seen Peaking

Posted on 14 April 2015

Speculators increased bullish oil bets by the most in more than four years, wagering that the U.S. production boom is slowing. Hedge funds boosted net-long positions on West Texas Intermediate crude by 30 percent in the seven days ended April 7, the biggest jump since October 2010, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.

OPEC slams oil producers with ‘go-it-alone’ attitudes

Posted on 14 April 2015

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries published a stinging critique on Monday of oil-producing countries that had refused to follow its lead in holding back supply in an effort to boost prices.

Who’s winning the oil battle: OPEC or the United States?

Posted on 14 April 2015

It’s been more than four months since the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries put global oil prices into a virtual free-fall when it decided at its semi-annual meeting in Vienna to not cut production. That has put a tremendous amount of pressure on what’s been called the shale oil revolution in North America and in the United States in particular.

How Much Longer Can OPEC Hold Out?

Posted on 14 April 2015

OPEC has been the most talked about international organization among investors, analysts and international political lobbies in the last few months. When OPEC speaks, the world listens in rapt attention as it accounts for nearly 40 % of the world’s total crude output.

IEA Chief Economist: No Immediate Oil Market Impact After Iran Deal

Posted on 14 April 2015

It could take three to five years for a new wave of Iranian oil to significantly increase world petroleum supplies and have a lasting impact on prices, the chief economist of the International Energy Agency said Monday.

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