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Gold industry needs ‘cleansing’ of weakest miners

Posted on 16 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The gold industry, recovering from the worst slump in prices in 30 years, needs more mergers to help improve investor returns and eliminate unprofitable mines, Fidelity Investments said. About a third of gold production is probably money-losing when the price of the metal is lower than $1,250 an ounce, said Joe Wickwire, who manages more than $1.8 billion of assets including the Fidelity Select Gold Portfolio.
With gold trading at about $1,230, it “might not be a bad thing” if the number of producers was reduced by a third. “It’s part of the life cycle of industries that every so often you need to have a cleansing of that which is not working,” Wickwire said in a phone interview last week from Boston, where Fidelity is based………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Uranium: Not if but when

Posted on 16 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Presenters at a uranium seminar organised this week by the London branch of Women in Mining, and sponsored by Fission Uranium, from a broad spectrum of the industry were all in agreement that uranium prices would likely rise substantially, but perhaps not yet - only in the medium to long term.
And medium to long is just another way of saying ‘jam tomorrow’, although in this case ‘tomorrow’ will undoubtedly come but price rises may not be significant until perhaps the end of the decade………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China alumina price rises to Yuan 2,700/mt despite lower metal prices

Posted on 16 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Platts ex-works Henan alumina assessment rose Yuan 60 from Friday to Yuan 2,700/mt ($439/mt) on Monday for 70:30 cash and credit payment terms on limited spot availability and in anticipation of seasonal restocking in the fourth quarter despite lower domestic metal prices, sources said.
The current price was also up Yuan 100/mt from a week earlier, and up Yuan 230/mt month on month. Offers in Henan were heard between Yuan 2,700-2,730/mt cash to partial credit terms, with buyers’ ideas pegged at Yuan 2,650-2,680/mt cash………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper price hits three-month low

Posted on 16 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper futures have fallen to their lowest level in nearly three months as investors bet that slower economic expansion in China will weigh on demand for the industrial metal. The most actively traded contract, for December delivery, settled US2.10c, or 0.7 per cent, lower at $US3.0855 a pound on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
This was the lowest settlement since June 19. On Monday, investors had their first chance to react to weaker Chinese industrial production data, released over the weekend. In August, China’s value-added industrial production posted its slowest increase since December 2008, climbing just 6.9 per cent from a year earlier………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iron Ore Rebound Seen by Morgan Stanley as Vale Sees $100

Posted on 16 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iron ore is heading for an end-of-year rally as some high-cost supplies are closed and steel demand picks up, according to Morgan Stanley, which said prices may first extend losses by a few more dollars before rebounding.
The steel-making raw material will drop into the $70s-a-ton range in the near term, then rally toward $90 a ton by the end of the year, analyst Joel Crane said in a report today. The commodity, which slumped to the lowest level in five years this month, last traded at less than $80 a ton in September 2009………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chinese Investors Look for Rare Earth Metals in Greece

Posted on 15 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Greek subsoil and its rare earth metals have attracted the interest of Chinese investors. On the occasion of the ERES international conference hosted in Greece from September 4 to 7, a delegation from China, which is considered the absolute leader in the earth metals field, visited Greece.
It is estimated that 17 valuable minerals associated to the high-tech industry are present in Greece. The majority lies in the underwater area of ​​the northern Aegean Sea and in Thrace. Indications of rare minerals appear in the areas of Rhodope, Thessaloniki, Chios, Kilkis, and in the coastal and underwater area of Strymonikos Bay, and bauxites on the Greek mainland………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Zinc: World running out and shortage hits pound in your pocket

Posted on 15 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Prices for the rust-resistant metal zinc soared to a three-year high last week as exhausted mines across the world close, but it is with the pound in our pocket that we are likely to feel the soaring cost most acutely. One and two-pound coins are made up of as much as 25 per cent zinc and analysts are predicting the Royal Mint may have to follow the example of the US Mint and take cost-cutting measures.
The news that zinc prices had spiked on Monday came only days before Chancellor George Osborne launched a competition to create an image that will be emblazoned on the “tails” side of the £1 coin………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Industrial Metals Fall After China Data Signals Slowing Economy

Posted on 15 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper lead most industrial metals lower after factory and retail-sales data signaled further slowing in China, the world’s biggest user. Copper in London fell as much as 0.8 percent, while zinc and lead also declined. Industrial-output growth in China was the weakest in August since the global financial crisis while investment and retail sales moderated, figures released Sept. 13 showed.
Factory data due today from the U.S., the second-biggest metals user, will probably indicate activity in August slowed from the previous month, according to a Bloomberg News survey………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s Global Mining Play Is Failing to Pan Out

Posted on 12 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A $10 billion iron-ore mine that has taken more than eight years to develop near this remote Australian port is a glaring example of how much has gone wrong with China’s decadelong push to buy up raw materials around the world.
Citic Pacific’s Sino Iron mine cost roughly four times its initial budget, and analysts who track the project say it likely will lose hundreds of millions of dollars in 2014, its first full year of production. Citic Pacific, a Hong Kong-listed subsidiary of Chinese state-owned behemoth Citic Group, and its contractors made a series of blunders, from thinking they could import workers at Chinese pay levels to a botched bet on currencies that forced the company to seek a $1.5 billion bailout from its parent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Industrial Metal ETFs To Buy Amid Weak Global Trends

Posted on 12 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Industrial metals, in particular nickel, aluminum and zinc, have been showing strength and are gaining enough investor interest despite the recent broad commodity sluggishness and strengthening dollar.
The positive sentiment was mainly driven by increasing industrial demand and limited supplies from existing mines and absence of new development projects. Since industrial metals are used in a number of applications in construction and manufacturing businesses, rising global population, urbanization of other Asian countries and increasing need from developed countries will continue to create unprecedented demand for industrial metals………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper outlook not supportive of price rebound: VTB Capital

Posted on 11 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The outlook for copper is “not convincing” enough to sustain a price rebound, with London Metal Exchange open interest waning, VTB Capital analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov said Wednesday. “This week saw heavy losses for copper, with the red metal erasing early September gains in a single stroke and tumbling towards support at August lows,” Kryuchenkov said in a research note.
He noted that persistently disappointing macroeconomic data is weighing on the LME complex, “with slack interest for most metals and specifically for copper, where improving supply side dynamics in the long run go in hand with short-term macro jitters and concerns over Chinese consumption.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

China to export more steel

Posted on 11 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

“The mills in China have been consistently overproducing. The major reason for this is the strong profitability of the industry – the price of both the ingredients (iron ore, coal, freight, fluxes etc.) and the finished steel has decreased, but the costs of producing a ton of steel fell more, so the profit margins have actually improved.
“For overproduction, steel is either stockpiled or it is exported. A quick look at the inventory numbers (nominal or seasonally adjusted) reveals that steel has actually been drawn out of stockpiles, not added. Hence we are left with the export option………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldcorp Inc CEO says gold price plunge to $900 would be an opportunity, not a disaster

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The chief executive of Goldcorp Inc. is not fretting over lower gold prices this year and says he would view any price declines as an opportunity to buy assets. In an interview with the Financial Post on Friday, Charles Jeannes, president and CEO of Goldcorp, spoke about the company’s growth prospects in the next year.
Gold prices have steadily pulled back since 2011, when they reached a record intraday price of US$1,909 an ounce. Prices for the precious metal closed Friday at US$1,268.81 an ounce………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China alumina prices rise further on strong sentiment

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s spot alumina prices firmed further across the country Tuesday on continued strong sentiment, as the market returned from an extended weekend to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival. China was closed September 6-8 for the national holiday.
The Platts ex-works Henan alumina price was Yuan 2,600/mt ($423/mt) for 70:30 cash and credit payment terms, up Yuan 20/mt from Friday. Spot trades were scarce Tuesday as domestic metal prices slipped, but sentiment stayed strong for the near term on anticipated restocking demand ahead of the winter during the fourth quarter and firmer imported alumina prices recently, several market sources said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Eight facts you should know about copper

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The other day, I was eating lunch with a friend and colleague, and he mentioned that copper can increase the risk of cancer. This was not the first time I had heard something scary about copper. Last year, another friend (a medical doctor) also mentioned copper’s association with cancer, especially hormonal types. How could something so integral to our body be so bad I wondered?
I researched it. Just like I suspected, copper is essential to good health. We don’t need a lot of copper, but certain healthy amounts are vital and essential to our health and well-being. It’s all about balance!……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Iron ore price at new five-year low

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The price of iron ore has again failed to find support in overnight trade, slipping further away from the $US85 a tonne mark. Benchmark iron ore for immediate delivery to the port of Tianjin in China is currently trading at $US83.20 a tonne, down half a per cent from its $US83.60 closing mark in the previous session. The current price represents its lowest level since September 23, 2009 on the back of falls in the order of 40 per cent this year.
The commodity has barely paused for breath during a remarkable retreat over the past two-and-a-half weeks, with just one positive trading session in the last 16 as investors fret about surging supply from majors BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Vale at a time when Chinese demand is showing signs of fatigue………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Palladium Hits 13-Year High

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The geopolitical stand-off between Russia and the West over the Ukraine issue hit most headlines this year. The U.S. and the European Union (EU) initially imposed minor bans on some Russian diplomats as a protest against Russian activity toward Ukraine.
However, in July, the U.S. forbade Russia’s all-important energy , banking and defense sectors with the European Union and Canada also introducing similar sanctions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Private Equity’s Quest for Mines Foundering as Commodities Slide

Posted on 10 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The push by private equity funds to acquire mining assets is slowing as investors struggle to land major deals while commodity prices slide. The funds have raised $1.1 billion for investments in mining and metals this year, compared with about $8.8 billion in 2013, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Less than $2 billion has been spent by the funds on mining assets in the past two years, according to Bloomberg Intelligence research. “When private equity make an investment they say they want to be out in three to five years,” David Williams, managing director of corporate adviser Kidder Williams Ltd., said……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Zinc Deficiency Gives Investors a Jolt

Posted on 09 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world is running low on zinc, sending some investors scurrying to buy mining-company shares and forcing the U.S. Mint to redouble cost-cutting efforts in search of a cheaper penny. Prices for the metal have soared to three-year highs. Investors are betting prices will continue to climb as some of the world’s largest zinc mines run dry just as demand is ramping up.
Zinc is used in everything from steel coatings to car tires to sunscreen, and the metal has few substitutes. The U.S. Mint reduced manufacturing costs to offset higher prices for zinc, which makes up 97.5% of every penny………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nickel Leads Metals Lower as Rally to 3-Month High Seen Overdone

Posted on 09 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nickel lead industrial metals lower, dropping for the first time in five days on speculation that a price rally to a three-month high was excessive.
The metal in London fell as much as 1.1 percent after closing yesterday at the highest since May 19. Nickel’s 14-day relative strength index rose to near 68 yesterday, signaling prices may have climbed too quickly. A level above 70 typically means a market is overbought………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s Copper Imports Slow Due to Probe

Posted on 09 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s commodity imports in August mostly softened, led by a 12% decline in the volume of copper shipments from a year earlier due to the fallout from a government probe into metal financing at Chinese ports. Copper imports fell to 340,000 metric tons, according to customs data Monday.
Chinese authorities earlier this year launched investigations into alleged fraud involving aluminum and copper stocks used as collateral for loans in China. Commodity-backed financing has fueled imports of copper in recent years, but this appears to be ebbing due to the investigations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How to find, well, gold, in the troubled mining sector

Posted on 05 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold prices are hovering near a two-month low, but some analysts say there is still value in the companies that mine the precious metal. Gold for December delivery, the currently most-traded active contract, on Wednesday rose by US$5.50, or 0.4%, to US$1,270 an ounce as of 4 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
The metal’s stagnant price has raised questions about the financial health of gold miners, which require gold to remain at a certain price to profitably mine it. But CIBC World Markets said some gold companies offer attractive value even at current prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Palladium Wins Another Week Of Geo-Politics

Posted on 05 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Although it’s been relatively quiet due to the holiday season, Palladium has been the winner this week, while for GoldMoney customers, Silver has also outshone its glittering yellow cousin. Dealing Manager at the online precious metals trader, Kelly-Ann Kearsey, said: “Activity has been as you’d expect for this time of year, although it’s picked up on last week and we’ve still got more buyers than sellers. Among our customers we’ve seen some significant silver purchases, which have gone into the eastern vaults, most particularly Hong Kong, but muted interest for gold.”
Geo-political concerns are undoubtedly one of the major influencers on the market at the moment. Despite the strength of the dollar the concerns have supported the gold price at the 1300 level………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is Zinc most vulnerable for September?

Posted on 05 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

INTL FCStone said that it sees a gradual grind lower in copper during September, with potential for other London Metal Exchange base metals to soften as well. The LME base metals group has been withstanding the weakening macro picture out of China quite impressively, but INTL FCStone is not sure how much longer it will be able to shrug off the poor numbers.
INTL FCStone thinks zinc and copper are likely the most vulnerable, and although aluminum looks very solid on the charts, it is also getting quite overextended in light of the fact that production growth, particularly from China, continues to outpace domestic demand………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Cost-cuts put gold miners between rock and a hard place

Posted on 04 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Deep cost cuts have helped to restore profits at gold miners pummeled by a one-third slide in bullion prices in the past three years, but the fix may only be short term and could be setting the industry up for even more long-term pain.
The all-in cost of producing an ounce of gold dropped by 23 percent to $1,331 an ounce in the year to end-March, according to data from Citigroup. The data, published on Aug. 13, covers miners producing about half of the world’s gold………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Uranium poised to enter bull market

Posted on 04 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Uranium is poised to enter a bull market amid tightening supply as producers shut mines and delay projects, more than three years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan sent prices lower.
The atomic fuel has advanced as much as 18 percent from a May 20 low of $28 a pound, according to data from Ux Consulting Co. in Roswell, Georgia, which provides research on the nuclear industry. Prices closed 0.5 percent higher at $32.65 yesterday and have averaged $31.80 in 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

BHP, Rio reveal $US800 million ‘secret’ copper stash

Posted on 04 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto could earn as much $US800 million between them for at least three years when they unlock a “secret” 200,000 tonnes of copper at their Escondida copper mine in Chile, Deutsche Bank says.
Deutsche mining analyst Paul Young says Rio and BHP are likely to tell the market in the next six months they have scrapped their plan to tear down one of the two operating plants at Escondida, called Los Colorados. The mining giants had planned to dismantle the plant when a third big plant, the $US3.8 billion concentrator OGP1, was brought online at the mine in the March quarter next year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iron ore hits a new two-year low

Posted on 04 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Concern about slowing demand in China has pushed the price of iron ore, a key steelmaking ingredient, to its lowest level in two years. A huge increase in supply from the big three global producers – BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Vale which all depend heavily on iron ore for their profitability – has weighed on the raw material this year. The price has fallen by more than 35 per cent.
But the recent sell-off, which has seen the price of benchmark Australian ore fall from almost $100 in early July to $85.70 a tonne on Wednesday, has been driven by fears about China, the world’s biggest consumer of seaborne iron ore………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China Banks Boost Precious Metals Hoard Amid Lease Demand

Posted on 02 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The value of precious metals held by China’s biggest lenders surged 66 percent from a year ago as banks lease more gold to customers because tighter borrowing rules make it harder to lend funds.
Precious metals held by Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., China Construction Bank Corp., Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. and Bank of China Ltd., the country’s four biggest lenders, were worth 378 billion yuan ($62 billion) at the end of the second quarter, according to financial reports. The growth since last year outpaced the gain in benchmark bullion prices, which rose 7.5 percent over the same period………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Palladium price touches a more than 13-year high on worries of further sanctions on Russia

Posted on 02 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Palladium surged to a more than 13 ½-year high above $900 a troy ounce today on concerns more sanctions against Russia could affect supply from the world’s largest producer.
A day after the EU threatened to impose further punitive measures against Russia unless it de-escalated the situation in Ukraine within a week, Russian president Vladimir Putin said talks between the Ukrainian government and separatists in the east of the country should start immediately and be about “not just technical issues but on the political organisation of society and statehood in south-eastern Ukraine,” the Guardian reported………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper Declines on China’s Manufacturing Data for August

Posted on 02 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper fell in London on signs that factory demand will slow in China, the world’s largest consumer of the industrial metal. The purchasing managers’ index from the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing dropped to 51.1 for August from 51.7 in July. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg projected 51.2.
China’s copper output rose to a six-month high in July and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. forecasts more smelting capacity in the second half, curbing imports of the refined metal. Prices declined 5.7 percent this year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

U.S. case dismissal won’t dim regulatory glare for base metals sector

Posted on 02 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Industrial metals will stay in sharp regulatory focus, even though a U.S. judge dismissed a high-profile case claiming that Wall Street banks and commodity merchants artificially inflated aluminum prices by restricting supply.
Users of the metal who launched the case are facing continued headaches about supplies as the warehouse backlogs they complained about are still largely in place, while sky-high surcharges remain for those wanting material immediately………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Silver Pricing Change Takes Effect; Other Metals to Follow

Posted on 29 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With the launch in mid-August of a new system to arrive at the price for silver, precious metals investors are dealing with the first in a series of changes in how the market prices of silver, gold, platinum and palladium are reached.
More change is coming, since the other three metals have yet to go through the process, but what’s happened so far is this: Concerns about price fixing after everything from LIBOR to currency were found to have been manipulated led to accusations about the gold and silver markets, and in January of this year Germany’s financial regulator Bafin said that the manipulation of precious metals prices was worse than that occurring with LIBOR………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Industrial Metals on the Mend

Posted on 29 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A rise in the global population, growth in the Chinese economy, urbanization of other Asian countries and the increasing requirements of developed countries have created an unprecedented demand for industrial or base metals given their usage in a wide variety of applications in the construction and manufacturing businesses.
However, of late, tepid global economic growth and a slowdown in the Chinese economy have emerged as major headwinds for the global metal industry………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Sachs sees nickel price rally continuing into 2015

Posted on 29 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

US investment bank Goldman Sachs said the refined nickel market has shifted from a major surplus in 2013 to a much smaller surplus in 2014, according to a research note Thursday, adding that prices are likely to continue to rally into 2015.
The bank notes that the buildup of LME warehouse stocks is merely a moving of stock from an Australian stockpile (since the start of 2013) and from Chinese bonded warehouses (following the Qingdao port investigation in Q2, when the authorities launched an investigation into trading companies for allegedly using warehouse receipts multiple times to secure financing from banks)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Zinc, nickel prices to ‘move dramatically higher’ - Scotiabank

Posted on 29 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Scotiabank’s Metal & Mineral Index rallied strong in July as base metal prices jumped higher across a broad front—“pushed up in part by exuberance over better-than-expected results for China’s economy”, observed Scotiabank economist Patricia Mohr in an analysis published Wednesday.
“Firmer potash and sulphur prices and the beginning of a recovery in uranium also contributed to the gain,” she noted. “Spot uranium prices have increased to US$31 per pound in late August alongside stepped-up Chinese buying, after bottoming at a mere US$28 in June………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What does the rare Earth metal market urgently need?

Posted on 28 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Those REE deposits in development that have the greatest chances of success (i.e. being developed into a mine, and thus, offering the highest share price appreciation potential no matter if REE prices remain low) are those that host a REE mineralization out of which a >30% TREO mineral concentrate can be produced with an industry standard process that makes economic sense.
Unfortunately for REE investors, today there exist not many undeveloped REE deposits hosting a mineralization out of which a high enough grade mineral concentrate can be produced, and easily processed, which would be saleable to global REE processors (also known as separation or refining facilities), and from which the numerous REE end-products, which are saleable to the industry, could be produced………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Peru to be World 2nd Biggest Copper Producer

Posted on 28 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Benefiting from a USD 20 billion Chinese mining project, Peru will be the world second largest copper producer just after Chile , according to Peruvian governmental officials. A Chinese consortium lead by China Minmetals Corporation won bid for Glencore Xstrata’s Las Bambas copper mine in Peru in July. The Chinese side will acquire the USD 20 billion mine with nearly USD 7 billion . This has been China’s biggest overseas mining acquisition.
The Las Bambas project is one of the largest copper mines under construction worldwide; its annual output capacity is predicted to reach 450,000 tons after completion, representing 13% of China’s total copper imports last year. The mine is predicted to come into production in the second half of 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Zinc and nickel prices to move ‘dramatically higher’ in 2015

Posted on 28 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Zinc and nickel prices could move dramatically higher over the next two years as a cyclical recovery takes hold in the base metal sector, says a new report from Scotiabank. Prices for zinc and nickel have been steadily rising this year as global growth continues to rebound, fuelling stronger prices for base metals.
Patricia Mohr, commodity market specialist at Scotiabank, said zinc and nickel are in a good position because they are either in or nearing supply deficit positions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Platinum giants still to struggle

Posted on 27 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A combination of labour issues, various spats with government and a number of operational issues are not yet behind Lonmin, Impala Platinum and AngloPlats and investors should be wary of committing to buying shares despite a recent recovery. Lonmin in particular was one of the big movers in Europe last week, rising just over 5%. But Peter Garny, head of equity strategy at Saxo Bank was not convinced.
He told clients: “Our quant model remains significantly more bearish than consensus with a 12-month return target of only 2% compared to 31% based on 25 sell-side analyst estimates. As a result, Lonmin is the least favoured mining company in Europe by our model and the technical picture shows significant negative momentum so, in our view, it is too early to play the turnaround case………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global Copper Deficit May Support Prices – Morgan Stanley

Posted on 27 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The global copper market is at its biggest deficit in seven years, says Morgan Stanley, citing data from the International Copper Study Group. The group says the copper deficit is 466,000 metric tons for the January-May timeframe, versus a 250,000 surplus in the same period of 2013, Morgan Stanley says, while adding its full-year forecast is for a 90,000 ton deficit.
ICSG also showed global use was up 15% year-over-year, with strong demand out of China seen. “Given this wide supply shortfall, we remain comfortable with our forecast for deficit conditions this year and next, as well as progressively higher prices,” Morgan Stanley says, also forecasting London Metal Exchange copper prices to average $7,165 a metric ton in the fourth quarter………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodities: Iron ore prices fall towards 2009 lows

Posted on 27 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Front month West Texas crude futures ended the session just barely higher, up by 1 cent at $93.35 per barrel on the NYMEX. To be had in account, militants in Libya took control of the Tripoli airport, underscoring the still tenuous security situation in the North African country - from which oil exports have recently increased moderately.
Gold futures for December delivery ended the day lower by just $1.9/oz. at $1,278.9/oz. on COMEX despite the still unsettled geopolitical backdrop………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Big miners cause iron ore plunge

Posted on 27 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The big miners, rather than slowing growth in China, are being blamed for the steep fall in the price of Australia’s top export, iron ore. However it is unlikely they are worried about it. Iron ore fell below $US90 a tonne on Monday for the second time this year, selling for $US89.20.
The aggressive multi-billion dollar expansions by Australia’s Fortescue Metals, Anglo-Australians BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto and Brazil’s Vale of recent years are widely considered to have caused a glut in supply………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold likely to find limited support on downside: Barclays

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold is likely to find limited support on the downside in the absence of firm physical demand coupled with muted investor appetite, a report by Barclays said. Gold prices dropped to two-month lows, remaining below the $1300/oz mark last week following stronger-than-expected data from the US and hawkish comments from the Fed.
In the US, key data released last week were stronger than expected, ranging from existing home sales, the Philly Fed manufacturing index, the Conference Board’s index of leading indicators, to the weekly unemployment claims. The August employment report (due September 5) is likely to show solid employment growth of 200k and the unemployment rate to decline 0.1%, to 6.1%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Platinum giants still to struggle

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A combination of labour issues, various spats with government and a number of operational issues are not yet behind Lonmin, Impala Platinum and AngloPlats and investors should be wary of committing to buying shares despite a recent recovery.
Lonmin in particular was one of the big movers in Europe last week, rising just over 5%. But Peter Garny, head of equity strategy at Saxo Bank was not convinced. He told clients: “Our quant model remains significantly more bearish than consensus with a 12-month return target of only 2% compared to 31% based on 25 sell-side analyst estimates……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Fund Managers Cut Most Precious Metals Positions In Latest CFTC Data

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Large speculators cut their net-long gold futures and options holdings on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange in the latest Commodity Futures Trading Commission data for the week ended Aug. 19, reversing some of the gains established in the last report.
The retreat came as geopolitical fears subsided and pushed the yellow metal under $1,300 an ounce during that timeframe. Platinum group metals activity was mixed, with large speculators adding to bullish palladium holdings and dropping platinum. These traders continued to trim net-long silver positions and cut their exposure in copper, too………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Fund Citrine Sees Zinc, Nickel as Best Base Metal Bets

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Zinc and nickel will probably lead advances in base metals next year as global demand outstrips production, according to Paul Crone, chief investment officer at Citrine Capital Management LLC.
Zinc may rally to $2,500 to $2,700 a metric ton, as much as 15 percent higher than last week, said Crone, who manages more than $200 million at the New York-based hedge fund and has traded metals for a quarter of a century. Nickel may rise 23 percent to $23,000 as Indonesia’s ban on raw ore exports cuts supply, Crone said in a phone interview on Aug. 21………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Aluminum Inventory: The Elephant in the Commodity Metals Room

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

OK, so what’s happening on the LME’s largest contract, primary aluminum? The cash to three months spread is down to just $17/ton and 118,850 tons of metal sitting in the exit queue at Vlissingen, Netherlands, has just been put back on the market according to a Thomson Reuters report by Andy Home.
According to Home’s report, the front part of the LME curve has been tightening for several weeks now, to the point that the shortest-dated spreads are currently in backwardation. The LME is periodically distorted by major players taking massive positions on certain key dates and manipulating prices as a result………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Peru to become world’s second-largest copper producer

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Peru is set to become the world’s second-largest copper miner, behind neighbouring Chile, thanks to a $20bn pipeline of Chinese mining projects, according to senior officials in Lima. Last month’s $7bn acquisition of Glencore’s Las Bambas copper project in Peru by China Minmetals’ MMG subsidiary has reinforced the links between the two countries, as Beijing seeks to secure more resources to drive economic growth.
MMG’s Las Bambas deal means Chinese backers are now behind one-third of all Peru’s new mining investments by value, estimated by the country at $61bn………………………………………..Full Article: Source

As Commodity Prices Slide, Big Miners Seek a Sustainable Strategy

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Navigant Research’s report, Renewable Energy in the Mining Industry, summed up the state of the global mining business: “In the last decade, increased demand from countries such as China and other emerging economies pushed the price of many metals and minerals upward, which stimulated investment in the mining industry.
More recently, the global economic downturn and the collapse in a number of metal and mined commodity prices forced the mining industry to scale back investment into new mine sites, reduce operating mine lives, and scale back their investment into more capital expenditure-heavy renewable energy.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

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