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VRS - who has written 41298 posts on Opalesque Commodities Briefing.


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Is there a huge investing opportunity in the oil markets?

Posted on 01 July 2015

A rare occurrence now happening on oil markets might be a huge opportunity for investors who play it right, says Tim Pickering, president and chief investment officer at Auspice Capital Advisors Ltd.

OPEC output surges as Iraq accelerates production

Posted on 01 July 2015

Iraqi crude production climbed to a record this month, helping send OPEC output to the highest level since August 2012. Output by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries climbed 744,000 barrels to 32.134 million a day this month, according to a Bloomberg survey of oil companies, producers and analysts. Last month’s total was revised 189,000 barrels lower to 31.39 million a day, because of changes to the Saudi, Iraqi, Algerian and Nigerian estimates.

OPEC oil output hits 3-year high in June on Iraq - Reuters survey

Posted on 01 July 2015

OPEC oil supply in June has climbed to a three-year high due to record or near-record output from Iraq and Saudi Arabia, a Reuters survey found, underlining the focus of the group’s top exporters on market share.

All Signs Point To Higher Gold Prices

Posted on 01 July 2015

In the face of historic monetary stimulus from nearly every major central bank in the world over the past few years, an investment in gold would have seemed to be a “no-brainer.” Yet the precious metal’s price, around $1,178 per ounce, has barely budged. Now may be the time to give gold a fresh look. Fundamental drivers appear in place for long-term upside, and technical support could provide a near-term catalyst.

Gold price unaffected by Greek crisis

Posted on 01 July 2015

The situation on the gold market calmed down quickly again yesterday following the initial turmoil and the gold price shed all of its gains again. This morning sees gold trading at $1,175 and €1,050 per troy ounce respectively. Clearly, gold market participants are expecting Greece to remain in the Eurozone.

China targets counterweight in gold trade with yuan fix

Posted on 01 July 2015

A decade after China kicked off a series of gold market reforms, plans to establish a yuan price fix mark one of Beijing’s biggest step so far to capitalise on the country’s position as the world’s top producer and a leading consumer.

Silver About to Turn More Volatile

Posted on 01 July 2015

Silver has moved sideways for about nine months, after it moved sideways from a slightly higher level for about 14 months. Boring! The big events in the past 5 years have been: August 2010: Silver began a huge move from under $18 to nearly $50. April 2011: Silver hit a 30 year high just under $50.00.

With Greek Uncertainty, Investors Seek Safety in Gold and Bitcoin

Posted on 01 July 2015

As Greece descends into financial crisis, its citizens and investors globally are turning to hedges old and new. European demand for the age-old safe haven of gold coins has risen in recent weeks, as has the relatively new concept of investments in digital bitcoins, market participants say.

Nickel Slides to 6-Year Low as Shanghai Eases Constraint

Posted on 01 July 2015

Industrial metals from aluminum to tin capped the longest run of quarterly losses since 2001 on concern that a sputtering economy will erode demand in China, the world’s top consumer, while turmoil in Greece mounts.

Strong $1.6 bln inflows into top Shanghai ETFs fuel govt support speculation

Posted on 01 July 2015

The four biggest exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on the Shanghai Stock Exchange attracted nearly 10 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) worth of subscriptions on Monday, when major indexes slumped more than 3 percent.

3 Agricultural ETFs Rising on Wet Weather

Posted on 01 July 2015

After a rough patch over the last six months thanks to a stronger dollar and accelerated crop plantation on a favorable weather outlook, agricultural ETFs seem to have turned the corner. Last week was great for the beaten down agro-based commodities, as worries over wet weather in America’s key growing belts led traders to bet on the contracts of several agricultural commodities.

How do you change a currency – fast?

Posted on 01 July 2015

With Grexit looming for Greece, how would the country bring a new currency into circulation as quickly as possible? The drachma was the world’s oldest existing currency before it was replaced by the euro on January 1, 2001. And it may be about to make a comeback. This Sunday’s referendum is described by European leaders as a vote for or against the euro. If Greece votes “oxi”, the country may soon be looking for a new currency.

Greece’s Five Possible Future Currency Arrangements

Posted on 01 July 2015

Greece is poised between remaining a member of the eurozone or leaving it. In fact, there are five possible future currency arrangements for Greece. Here they are: Greece stays in the eurozone: This is the option likely to cause the smallest short-term disruption to the Greek economy. The Greek central bank would retain access to liquidity from the European Central Bank, and the Greek banks would stay on life support.

South Korea confirms plan for 37 per cent carbon cuts

Posted on 01 July 2015

Asian powerhouse to submit higher reductions than expected today as contribution to global emissions reduction deal. South Korea has confirmed plans to cut emissions 37 per cent against a business as usual baseline, up from the 15 to 30 per cent reduction it had initially proposed.

China to cap rising emissions by 2030 in boost to Paris deal

Posted on 01 July 2015

In a big leap towards ensuring a climate deal in Paris this winter, the world’s biggest carbon dioxide emitter China on Tuesday submitted a comprehensive action plan to check its rising carbon flow into atmosphere including peaking of its emissions by 2030.

Commodities Drop as Greek Turmoil Spurs Concern Demand Will Wane

Posted on 30 June 2015

Commodities fell the most in a week on concern that Greece’s deepening financial crisis will threaten global economic growth and demand for energy and metals. The Bloomberg Commodity Index of 22 raw materials lost as much as 0.9 percent, the most since June 19. Energy products and industrial metals led declines, with crude oil dropping to a three-week low and nickel slumping to the lowest since 2009.

Greece and China weigh on commodities

Posted on 30 June 2015

Commodities did not escape the market turmoil caused by Greece’s capital controls and a hefty drop in Chinese equities, with the stronger dollar and risk aversion hitting raw materials led by oil and metals. ICE August Brent, the international benchmark that has traded within a tight range of $61-$66 a barrel for several weeks, fell $1.41 a barrel to $61.86. In the US, Nymex August West Texas Intermediate fell $1.23 a barrel to $58.40.

El Niño set to disrupt key commodities in 2015

Posted on 30 June 2015

El Niño 2015 is underway and set to hit wheat, coffee and sugar cane production leading to volatile prices, warns a Rabobank report. With buffer stocks for these commodities at ‘comfortable levels’, some of the impact of a particularly strong El Niño would be buffered - but not completely shielded from fundamental and speculative influences. This also held for soy oil and palm oil, the report said.

How Will An Iran Deal Impact The Global Oil Market?

Posted on 30 June 2015

Analysts at Morgan Stanley Research recently polled 299 investors about the impact that a potential Iranian nuclear deal would have on the global oil market. Analyst Haythem Rashed summarized the survey results and noted important upcoming deadlines for oil investors to watch when it comes to the Iran negotiations.

Will Opec gain with higher production?

Posted on 30 June 2015

What is common between the production and marketing approaches of the 12-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and the world’s three largest producers of iron ore - Vale, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto? The fall in prices of crude oil from $115 a barrel in June 2014 to $64 now and of iron ore from $205 a tonne to $62.5 have not proved enough disincentive for leading producers of the two most globally traded commodities to apply a production brake.

Oil Speculators Least Bullish in 10 Weeks on Iran Talks

Posted on 30 June 2015

Hedge funds are the least bullish on crude in 10 weeks as talks resumed on a nuclear accord with Iran that could lift sanctions and swell supply. Money managers trimmed their net-long wagers on West Texas Intermediate by 1.3 percent in the week ended June 23, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.

Dollar gold price could go below $1,000/oz for short period: Natixis

Posted on 30 June 2015

The dollar gold price still has room to move lower, below $1,000/oz for a short period of time, Natixis analyst Bernard Dahdah told Platts Monday. In an email Dahdah said that, “even under the stress of the situation in Greece, the price of gold hasn’t benefited much. The market is fixated on the potential interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve. As we get closer to this hike so we expect gold prices to drop gradually.”

Gold price suggests investors not betting on Grexit

Posted on 30 June 2015

Ultimate safe-haven asset fades after brief rally, as investors dismiss possibility of Greek exit from eurozone. A gold rush has failed to materialise as Greece edges closer to total financial collapse, suggesting investors aren’t betting on an imminent ‘Grexit’.

Gold price standoff despite confluence of positives

Posted on 30 June 2015

Price has been remarkably steady over the past week despite a number of factors, which might have been expected to cause it to rise. The gold price has been trading in an extremely narrow range for the past few days, despite a number of seemingly positive pieces of news. It certainly seems that those who do not wish the price to rise back even to the $1,200 level or above have the markets firmly under control.

Upside Momentum for Gold Looks Strong in Second Half of the Year

Posted on 30 June 2015

The Shanghai Gold Exchange is expected to receive approval from its central bank for a yuan-denominated gold fix soon, according to Reuters. If the yuan fix takes off, China could draw buyers in the mainland and foreign suppliers to pay the local price, making the London fix less relevant in the world’s biggest bullion market.

Jim Rogers Gold Correction Forecast

Posted on 30 June 2015

A Jim Rogers gold prediction is taken seriously by investors. And today (Friday) we got a fresh Jim Rogers gold prediction courtesy of a MarketWatch interview. “Gold is in a correction, and the correction has gone on for four years,” Rogers said.

Copper benefits from equity margin calls

Posted on 30 June 2015

The abrupt reversal in China’s stock market has produced one unlikely beneficiary: copper. Though heavily tied to the fortunes of the Chinese economy, copper was the only major industrial commodity that rose on Monday. That may reflect Chinese hedge funds scrambling to buy back bearish bets against the metal, as they faced rising margin calls from the equity market.

Highland ETFs Offer Hedge Fund-Mimicking Alternative

Posted on 30 June 2015

Nervous about a tired bull market, rising bond yields and a potential Greek exit? Investors no longer have to search far or pay a steep hedge fund fee for peace of mind, according to Ethan Powell, chief product strategist for Highland Capital Management Fund Advisors.

Is now a good time to buy U.S. ETFs?

Posted on 30 June 2015

If you’re investing for the long haul and it isn’t a big lump sum amount, now is as good a time as any to buy U.S. ETFs. Why do I say that with such confidence? Because I’m not a market timer. I think it is almost impossible to predict where the market will move in the short term.

Hedge funds wrong-footed by wheat price surge

Posted on 30 June 2015

Hedge funds look to have been wrong-footed by the surge in wheat futures late last week, and saw profits dry up in soybeans as a rising market encouraged them to cover short positions at the fastest rate on record.

Baltic Exchange ship futures platform examines move into commodities

Posted on 30 June 2015

London’s Baltic Exchange is studying a potential foray into commodities and is open to proposals on tie-ups as other exchanges attempt to boost volumes, its chief executive said. Baltex, the Baltic’s digital shipping platform, was launched in 2011 as the first central electronic marketplace for freight forward agreements (FFAs), which allow investors to take positions on freight rates at a point in the future.

India: Commodity Exchanges’ Turnover Up 20% Till June 15 of This Fiscal

Posted on 30 June 2015

Turnover of the commodity exchanges rose by 20 per cent to Rs 13.97 lakh crore between April 1 and June 15 period of this fiscal on increased trade in farm and energy items. The turnover stood at Rs 11.66 lakh crore in the year-ago period, commodity market regulator Forward Markets Commission (FMC) said in a statement.

Euro currency calm counters Greece fears

Posted on 30 June 2015

Queues at cash machines, emergency bank holidays, introduction of capital controls and a hastily convened referendum — a cocktail of events that would normally be guaranteed to induce market heatstroke. And yet the way the euro reacted to these seemingly seismic events in Greece on Monday suggested the market was displaying a rare outbreak of cool maturity.

Swiss Sell Francs to Stabilize Currency After Greek Flare-Up

Posted on 30 June 2015

Swiss National Bank President Thomas Jordan said the central bank intervened to stabilize the franc, which surged after Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called a referendum on bailout terms. “Yesterday and overnight there was an increased demand for francs,” Jordan told a conference of Swiss executives in Bern on Monday. “The euro was under selling pressure and the SNB intervened in the market.”

The pope’s ecological vow

Posted on 30 June 2015

In the days just before its publication, those involved in drafting the pope’s controversial eco-encyclical Laudato Si’ were much exercised about how it would be received by conservative critics. But Pope Francis, Vatican insiders tell me, was unfazed. He remains so in the face of the onslaught of criticism that has, indeed, ensued.

China ready to go further on climate change: sources

Posted on 30 June 2015

China appears ready to set a more ambitious climate change pledge by moving up the timeline for peaking its carbon emissions and opening the possibility of sending money to other countries to take action, according to EU sources close to the negotiations. The declaration is expected no later than Tuesday, following parallel summits with China and the EU in Brussels, and in New York with United Nations members.

Water: The Next Tradable Commodity?

Posted on 30 June 2015

Water will one day be soon traded as a commodity. Setup in 2003 as an unmanaged benchmark, the Palisades Water Index is tracked by many water indexes and ETFs. As the popular rhyme goes: “Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink” tweet.

Bank for International Settlements warns of emerging market risks

Posted on 29 June 2015

Economists and foreign investors may have overestimated the potential economic output of a quintet of Latin American countries by 2 percentage points, leading to the possibility of sharp financial outflows when reality sinks in. Separately, “massive borrowing” by emerging market companies has also left them vulnerable to funding reversals if and when investor sentiment towards EMs reverses.

Latin America: The loss of El Dorado

Posted on 29 June 2015

After the commodity boom, the region needs a new formula for growth. It was wonderful while it lasted. For much of this century Latin America saw robust economic growth, a big fall in poverty and a swelling of the middle classes. Now the good times are over. Emerging markets everywhere are subsiding like a cooling soufflé. But Latin America has gone stone cold. The IMF expects growth of just 0.9% in 2015, which would be the fifth successive year of deceleration.

How Asia avoided a commodity crisis

Posted on 29 June 2015

Edmund Harriss, manager of the Guinness Asian Equity Income fund, says Asian countries have proved resilient to recent financial and commodity crises by becoming integrated manufacturing hubs that are not dependent on commodities

India: Disappointing rains may increase prices of key commodities by 6-20% in July

Posted on 29 June 2015

The monsoon’s flying start has depressed the prices of key commodities to such an extent that analysts and market watchers believe that if the rains, as the government’s weather bureau forecasts, turn out to be a damp squib in July these products could bounce back by as much as 6-20 per cent.

India: Agri commodities decline on higher acreage, favourable monsoon

Posted on 29 June 2015

Prices of agri commodities declined by upto 14% so far this month on prospects of bumper output this kharif season following better than forecast monsoon rainfalls and higher acreage. While soybean price fell by 14% to trade at Rs 3444 a quintal in Indore mandi, chana slumped by 13% to Rs 4162 a quintal in New Delhi market. Jeera prices in Unjha (Gujarat) slipped by 11% to Rs 16035 a quintal. Others commodities also followed suit.

One of Indonesia’s Richest Men Is Bullish on Commodity Processing

Posted on 29 June 2015

As the head of one of Indonesia’s largest investment companies, Peter Sondakh knows to follow market trends. It’s the reason he took up smoking cigars last year, he says, beneath the whir of air purifiers in his office. It’s also, he says, partly why he’s selling off stakes in his palm oil plantation – Indonesia’s third largest – in the hope of moving toward processing, refining and trading at a time when slumping commodity prices and weakened demand for raw materials from China have dented the economy.

Saudi Kingdom, Russia vie for global oil market foothold

Posted on 29 June 2015

In the rapidly changing geopolitical environment, Saudi Arabia and Russia are forging ahead - fostering a closer relationship - in major sectors including the all important energy sector. When the Saudi Deputy Crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, accompanied not only by the Foreign Minister Adel bin Jubeir but also the Petroleum Minister Ali Al-Naimi called on Russian President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg on June 18, six major deals were signed between the world’s two top crude producers.

US becomes biggest oil producer in 2014, surpasses Saudi Arabia

Posted on 29 June 2015

The United States has overtaken Saudi Arabia as the world’s biggest oil producer in 2014 while India has recorded the highest growth in energy consumption among major economies. The US produced 15.9 per cent more oil in 2014 at 11.6 million barrels of oil per day to topple Saudi Arabia’s 11.5 million bpd production, according to BP Plc’s Statistical Review of World Energy released on Wednesday.

Experts say Iran oil output to rise 500 bpd before 2016

Posted on 29 June 2015

Many may have already started to speculate when economic sanctions against Iran will be lifted in case the country manages to seal a deal with the P5+1 group of countries. Nevertheless, some have even gone further to speculate when Iran will see the economic objectives it has set for a post-sanctions era become materialized.

This could be the tipping point for oil prices

Posted on 29 June 2015

Record oil production meeting a wave of surprisingly strong demand has reined in world oil prices, creating a delicate balance that could be tipped either way—and the most immediate catalyst may be Iran’s nuclear talks.

OPEC crude market share shrinks to 12-year low

Posted on 29 June 2015

Booming U.S. shale production helped cut OPEC’s global crude market share to a 12 year low last year. According to OPEC’s Annual Statistical Bulletin, the group’s share of the global crude market sank to 41.8 percent in 2014, down from 43.3 percent the year before.

Gold will fall to $800 by end-2016

Posted on 29 June 2015

The sad truth is that gold is trapped in a vicious bear market. Gold prices have fallen from $1,930 in September 2011 to barely $1,175 now, a time during which the US stock market has almost doubled. Gold was unable to even hold $1,200 an ounce when rumors of a Troika-Greece debt bust mesmerised the European stock markets. It is tough to be a goldbug, even in the cloistered banking counting rooms of Credit Suisse and UBS. True believers (and their poor clients!) in Dubai have been gutted by gold [...]

Gold Miners’ Strike No Cure for Price Woes

Posted on 29 June 2015

Languishing gold prices could get some help as miners in South Africa enter wage negotiations with the industry’s labor unions. But it’s unclear how much difference even a significant strike will mean to prices.

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