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Zinc touches four-month peak as concern about shortages grows

Posted on 23 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Zinc prices surged to a four-month peak on Monday and other base metals also gained as investors’ appetite for risk increased while they also worried about potential shortages. Investor buying lifted industrial metals along with oil and equity markets, including shares in China, the world’s top consumer of metals.
“There’s higher risk appetite among market participants today which can be seen by the firmer Asian equity markets,” said analyst Daniel Briesemann at Commerzbank in Frankfurt………………………………………..Full Article: Source

4 Reasons Why Copper Is Due For A Rally

Posted on 23 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The copper bear. Reason one - Other commodity action. Reason two - Technicals. Reason three - Seasonal trends. Reason four - Interest rates and China. So far, in 2016, COMEX active month March copper futures have traded in a range between $1.9355 and $2.1380 per pound.
Copper, the red metal that is often a barometer for the global economic condition, has been quiet when compared to other commodities. While copper did trade down to the lowest level since April 2009 on January 19, it has spent most of the time above the $2 level recently………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Aluminium regains mojo

Posted on 22 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Aluminium prices surged 4 per cent last week, with the spot price on the London Metal Exchange (LME) closing on a stronger note at $1,562 per tonne on Friday. This is just above an important resistance at $1,560. The metal is up about 10 per cent from its low of $1,423 made in November 2015. Between May and November 2015, aluminium spot prices had plummeted over 27 per cent from a high of $1,959.
Prices of most metals have been strengthening in the global markets due to the recent weakness in the US dollar. Dollar weakness usually boosts metal demand as it makes it cheaper for consuming countries to import. Aluminium had fallen through last year, due to China adding to the supply glut at a time when the global economy was struggling to grow………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper Skeptics Boost Bearish Wagers, Defying Rally for Prices

Posted on 22 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

While copper prices have rallied in four of the past five weeks on the prospect of improved industrial demand in China, hedge funds are skeptical that recovery will last. The funds and other large speculators have bet on declines for the metal since October. Last week, the net-short position in copper holdings grew for the first time since mid-January, even as the metal advanced.
Doubts over a sustained rebound echo the outlook of Goldman Sachs Group Inc., where analysts predict that the metal will drop at least 10 percent by the end of the year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Lead sees biggest daily loss in 9 months after inventories jump

Posted on 18 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Lead suffered its biggest one-day loss in nine months on Wednesday, dropping more than 3 percent after a surge in inventories highlighted the market was well supplied. Other metals were mixed. Data showed that lead inventories at warehouses registered by the London Metal Exchange MPBSTX-TOTAL rose by 10 percent or 18,325 tonnes in one day.
“I don’t really think there’s any particular shortage of lead. The key market in lead is China and that’s been pretty weak,” said Citi analyst David Wilson. Data on Monday showed the global lead market surplus last year climbed to 63,000 tonnes from a surplus of 10,000 tonnes in 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iron ore price hits 2016 high

Posted on 17 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iron ore prices rose to their highest levels in three months on Tuesday, amid seasonal restocking by China’s steel mills following the lunar new year holiday. Iron ore with 62 per cent iron content for delivery to China, a key steelmaking ingredient and a big source of profits for miners such as BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, rose to $46.10, its highest level since November 17, according to the Steel Index.
Iron ore is up 5 per cent this year, outperforming most other commodities apart from gold. The gains this week have been driven by Chinese steel mills restarting after the week-long new year break, and amid a short-term supply tightness in the market, according to analysts………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Base metals higher on China stimulus bets

Posted on 16 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper and nickel rose as hopes for more stimulus measures resurfaced after Chinese traders, returning from a week-long holiday, digested worse-than-expected trade data.
Also helping the metals, oil held on to recent gains, while China’s central bank fixed the yuan at a much stronger rate. A stronger yuan reduces the risk that China will export deflation to the world. “There’s a sense of calm. The (China) trade stats … may be … fuelling hopes for more stimulus that will bolster demand,” said Societe Generale analyst Robin Bhar………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper lifts on upbeat US data

Posted on 15 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper has gained, along with oil and shares, after upbeat US data offered hope of a rebound in economic growth, but metals investors were on edge ahead of the re-opening of Chinese markets next week.
US consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of US economic activity, regained momentum in January as households ramped up purchases of a variety of goods. London Metal Exchange benchmark copper closed 1.2 per cent higher at $US4,500 a tonne, but also ended with its biggest weekly drop in a month, of nearly three per cent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dr. Copper Is Looking More Fit

Posted on 11 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper prices recently hit a one-month high as the dollar fell on weakening interest-rate hike fears. Recent data suggest China’s economic growth is on track, with copper demand holding steady. Motifs mentioned: Dr. Copper. With stocks struggling mightily this year – the Nasdaq touched a 22-month low on Monday – few sectors have offered much promise.
However, some investors have enjoyed early success rotating into industries that suffered in recent years while the broader market was ramping higher. Take copper, for example. The industrial metal had been in a solid price decline over the past couple of years, only occasionally showing signs of life. Even since the beginning of 2015, copper prices have slid more than 25%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Sachs Says Metals Set to Underperform Oil, Cuts Price Forecasts

Posted on 10 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs on Monday said metals, particularly copper and aluminum, are set to underperform oil in the near future on subdued global demand growth and a sluggish Chinese economy. “Around mid-2016 and through 2017, we expect that the oil market will adjust, while metals markets are set to weaken further, particularly copper and aluminum, resulting in substantial downside to metals prices relative to oil over the period,” the bank said.
The investment bank cut its average copper price forecast by 8 per cent to $4,339 per tonne in 2016 and 11 per cent to $4,000 per tonne in 2017, citing current Chinese and global demand weakness and further cost deflation………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper Drops, Other Base Metals Rise

Posted on 09 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China, the biggest consumer of many such metals, was out to celebrate its Lunar New Year. Base metals took a breather Monday, with prices for tin, lead and zinc all trading higher on a day when the dollar was weakening, global equity markets were bleeding, and China, the biggest consumer of many such metals, was out to celebrate its Lunar New Year.
At the London Metal Exchanges, prices for three-month contracts of tin, lead and zinc all gained about 3%. Aluminum and nickel were both up, too. Copper was the only laggard among all the industrial metals, down 0.6% to settle at $2.0915 a pound at the Commodity Exchange division of the New York Mercantile Exchange………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nickel price crushed by weight of ghost stocks

Posted on 09 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Another day, another landmark low for the nickel price. London Metal Exchange (LME) three-month nickel traded down to $7,900 per ton on Monday morning. Forget the troughs of the Global Financial Crisis in 2008. Nickel is now trading at levels last seen in April 2003.
And there may be worse to come. Might the price of nickel fall below that of copper, which is currently trading on the LME around $4,600 per ton? “Not an inconceivable prospect by any means,” according to one analyst, Leon Westgate of ICBC Standard Bank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mining sector burning through cash reserves after commodity price crash

Posted on 09 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The value of cash held by London Stock Exchange-listed mining companies fell by £1.1bn in the last year, according to research released today by Banc De Binary. The findings show a fall in cash reserves across all LSE-listed mining companies from £24.3bn to £23.2bn over the last 12 months. A drop of £780m was recorded in FTSE 100 mining companies.
Banc De Binary, a binary options trading platform, has said weak global demand for raw materials and falling commodity prices affecting mining profitability have prompted the turn towards available cash reserves. It stresses that, although the fall in cash reserves may appear modest, it is significant that a noticeable reduction in cash balances has begun………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Metal Bulls Savor Longest Rally in 10 Months on Feeble Dollar

Posted on 08 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors are jumping back into metals they were dumping as recently as a month ago. A global slowdown has increased speculation that U.S. growth will cool enough to force Federal Reserve policy makers to wait longer before raising interest rates again.
The prospect of delays sent the dollar lower and gave metals a boost as alternative investments. Speculators increased their bets on price gains for gold and silver and got less bearish on copper. Gold and copper prices have climbed for three straight weeks, the longest rally since at least mid-April………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dark clouds gather for South Africa’s miners

Posted on 08 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It is one of the mining industry’s historic heartlands and is endowed with some of the world’s richest mineral deposits. But right now South Africa is a place where some of the largest miners in the world are reluctant to do business.
More than 600 job cuts announced last week by South32, the Australian mining company that was last year spun out of BHP Billiton, are the latest indication of how South Africa is bearing the brunt of the worst commodities downturn in more than a decade. In total, 32,000 mining jobs in the country, about 6 per cent of the industry workforce, are subject to formal consultations that could lead to redundancies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Key Macroeconomic Indicators for Base Metal Prices

Posted on 02 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Market will eye January manufacturing PMIs from major economies on Monday. Investors are anticipating policy stimulus to help the Chinese economy bottom out. China’s official manufacturing PMI and that released by Caixin are expected to stabilize.
The euro zone will continue recovering mildly, which is possibly why the ECB did not take action to loosen monetary policy further. Germany and France will remain two major drivers of growth in the euro zone. Italy and Spain are recovering at a faster pace. This will allow manufacturing PMI in the euro zone to recover………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Barclays said to extend cutbacks by exiting precious metals

Posted on 01 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Barclays Plc plans to eliminate its precious-metals business, including trading and research, as the bank looks to minimise losses amid declines in commodities, according to a person with direct knowledge of the plan who asked not to be identified as the decision hasn’t been made public.
The move follows the London-based company’s plan to reduce 1,200 jobs worldwide and shut securities operations across Asia, people with knowledge said at the time. Gold has dropped more than 40 per cent from an all-time high reached in 2011 as investors snubbed bullion as a store of value. The bank declined to comment on the exit from precious metals, which was reported earlier on Friday by Platts………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Miners bracing for ‘doomsday’

Posted on 01 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Glencore chief executive Ivan Glasenberg rejected predictions that copper would fall below $US4000 a tonne, dubbing it a “doomsday” price. Rio Tinto chief executive Sam Walsh last year said the idea that iron-ore prices would fall to $US30 a tonne was from “fantasy land.”
Since Mr Glasenberg’s comments in September, copper prices have tumbled nearly 20 per cent, falling close to $US4300 a tonne. It has risen in recent days, but was down 1.3 per cent at $US4530 in London on Thursday and an ­increasing number of analysts are now saying prices will go below $US4000 soon………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Are mining shares the steal of the century?

Posted on 01 February 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Shares in miners are at their cheapest for almost 12 years having collapsed by 76pc since early 2011, but there are important reasons to stay cautious. Shares in mining companies are at their lowest levels for almost 12-years. Bargain hunters are right to be attracted to what looks like the opportunity of a lifetime, but industry experts are issuing a stark warning to those thinking of diving back in.
The amount of value destruction has been staggering. The FTSE 350 Mining Index peaked at more than 28,000 following the 2008 financial crisis, and it has fallen more than 76pc to end last week hovering around 6,800………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global Scenario Gathers Support for Precious Metals Prices

Posted on 29 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The upheaval in the Chinese markets during the start of the new year and the continued currency devaluation in China have hurt the world markets and sparked the appeal of gold as a haven asset.
The Federal Reserve is also likely acknowledging the current economic slump. It refrained from raising interest rates on January 27, 2016. Both the delay in the rate rise and the economic downturn are beneficial for precious metals. Gold and silver have risen 2.1% and 2.5%, respectively, on a five-day-trailing basis………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Miners still digging for victory

Posted on 29 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Demand growth changed dramatically across metals and bulk commodities last year. It slowed in aluminium and nickel, was flat in copper and contracted in iron ore and steel. Thermal coal was a notable exception, where growth continued unabated.
As such, 2015 will be remembered as the year when long-term growth prospects were challenged with “China peak consumption” predictions brought forward for many raw materials………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mining sector won’t recover anytime soon - Moody’s

Posted on 28 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There is little light on the horizon in the mining sector and it is unlikely to return to normality for years to come, said rating agency Moody’s Investors Service. “We believe that the current severe downturn in the mining industry represents a fundamental shift in the operating environment and that, as a consequence, a wholesale recalibration of ratings is required,” Moody’s said.
The slump is unprecented and no mere normal cyclical downturn, said Moody’s, adding that stress on companies in the metals and mining industry could surpass that seen during the 2008/2009 financial crisis………………………………………..Full Article: Source

More mining M&A expected amid commodity slump

Posted on 28 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Mining companies have been in survival mode, walking a tightrope on the slump in commodity prices and demand. Commodity producers across the board are all feeling the pinch. Copper and platinum prices are at a ten-year low, iron ore continues to fall and other bulk commodities are following a similar track.
Adding to the pressure is the slowdown of China’s economy on the back of the country’s ailing manufacturing sector, which has prompted jitters in global markets. The commodities slump has hit SA particularly hard, with the impact exacerbated by local factors such as government’s interventions in the mining sector, labour instability and erratic power supply………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Zinc leads metals higher on China

Posted on 27 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Zinc led industrial metals higher in its longest winning streak since the start of September on an increase in Chinese imports. It rose 2.1% to $1 547 a metric ton by 10:43am on the London Metal Exchange, a fourth straight day of gains. Copper jumped as much as 1.9% and lead 0.9%.
Chinese imports of zinc surged last month to the highest since May 2009 as buyers took advantage of low prices and bought in anticipation of further declines in the yuan exchange rate. The country also imported the most refined copper since 2008………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What Dr Copper isn’t telling us right now: Andy Home

Posted on 27 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

For those who like their market narratives nice and simple Dr. Copper’s message is resoundingly clear. The metal with the reputation for shining a light on the state of global manufacturing is telling us that demand growth has all but evaporated, thanks first and foremost to China.
Moreover, this is no cyclical aberration. Rather, to quote credit agency Moody’s, which has just put 175 commodities companies on review for possible downgrade, “the effect of slowing growth in China indicates a fundamental change”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why Iran is a problem for the oil market

Posted on 26 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An Iranian oil tanker, moored at the port of Assaluyeh for more than a year, set sail for South Korea last week, heralding a new period of uncertainty for world crude prices.
The global oil market, already suffering a supply glut, has been anticipating the arrival of Iranian crude for months, and now that sanctions against its nuclear program have been lifted, Iran is free to sell more of its oil into a market already oversupplied by 1.5 million barrels or more a day………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper’s crash to see average price hit lowest since 2005

Posted on 26 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper prices are expected to see their lowest average in more than a decade this year due to weak demand growth in top consumer China and a supply overhang, a Reuters survey of metal analysts showed.
But 2016 is also likely to see losses come to an end as cuts in mine supply help balance the market. The survey of 32 metal analysts showed the median forecast for prices of the metal used in power and construction at $4,858 a ton this year, the lowest since 2005 when the number was around $3,600 and the commodities “super-cycle” was in its ascendancy………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Citi upgrades 2016 gold price forecast, lowers palladium

Posted on 22 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Citi revised upward its 2016 gold forecast because of fears that China’s slowdown will spread to other parts of the globe, tensions in the Middle East and slumping equities around the world. The bank now expects prices to average $1,070 this year, a 7.5-percent upgrade on previous expectations. The spot gold price recently traded at $1,095.40/1,095.80 per ounce, down $3.50 on the previous close.
“Gold’s safe-haven rationale is back in vogue for the time being on fears of further China macro contagion, whipsaw equity markets, and geopolitical issues in the form of rising Arabian Gulf tensions,” the bank said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Miners, stung by commodity price cash, cut costs and debt

Posted on 22 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

London-listed mining companies have been hit by plummeting commodity prices, forcing them to slash jobs, costs, capital expenditure and dividends.
BHP Billiton shares are at their lowest since January 2005, while Rio Tinto stocks hit levels last seen in March 2009. Shares in Glencore and Anglo American plunged to repeated record lows. Below is a summary of the steps miners have taken so far to improve balance sheets and what they have committed to do………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investec cuts base metals forecasts, sees ‘disincentive’ prices

Posted on 21 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investec has cut its base metals price forecasts for 2016 and 2017, with zinc and nickel in particular now seen sharply lower than in its previous report at the end of October. “Falling intensity of commodity consumption in China, a strong US dollar and significant overproduction in many commodities, lead us to highlight the disincentive nature of our revised commodity price forecasts from 2016 onwards,” the investment bank said in its latest mining sector review.
Investec defined disincentive prices as “exceptionally low prices maintained long enough to force out excess supply in order to rebalance markets and deter new investment.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Metals and Miners Resume Slide as Growth Concerns Roil Markets

Posted on 21 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Mining stocks plumbed a 12-year low and metals resumed their slump as sinking oil and equity markets fueled concerns about world economic growth and prospects for demand.
Oil plunged and stocks from Asia to Europe slid, fueling a rush to haven assets such as gold. The Bloomberg World Mining Index dropped as much as 3.3 percent to its lowest since September 2003, with the world’s biggest miner, BHP Billiton Ltd., losing 7.4 percent in London. Citigroup Inc. cut copper and other base-metals forecasts………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold Miners May Finally Be Worth a Look

Posted on 20 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A gold price rally has some investors thinking it might finally be time to start looking at gold mining stocks. Gold prices are just off two-month highs, outperforming commodity and financial markets in 2016 as fears about China’s stock market and its economy sent shock waves across global financial markets, hitting U.S. stock markets.
The yellow metal’s rise to around $1,100 an ounce comes after a few years of losses. Prices fell about 43 percent from their 2011 peak of over $1,900 an ounce – a nominal record high………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nickel leads gains in most industrial metals amid China rebound

Posted on 19 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nickel led base metals higher in London, rebounding after two weeks of losses prompted by concerns over financial turmoil in China, the biggest consumer of commodities. Metals benefited from gains in equity markets and the currency in the Asian country on Monday.
“The higher Chinese stock market and the sharp appreciation of the Chinese currency against the US dollar brought a little bit of good mood into the bearish metals market,” Richard Fu, head of Asia & Pacific at Amalgamated Metal Trading in London, said by email………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Buy palladium and dump gold, says precious metals forecasters

Posted on 18 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors may not want to get too used to this month’s surprise rally in gold. Some of the most accurate precious metals forecasters say the gains won’t last and instead expect palladium to advance, even though it’s off to worst start in decades. After dropping for three straight years, gold has advanced more than any other metal in January.
Bullion’s appeal as a haven got a boost from political tension in the Middle East and Asia and global market turmoil. At the same time, industrial commodities have tumbled. Palladium, a metal used mostly for catalytic converters in cars, fell 12%in January. “The gold market is benefiting from geopolitical news and Chinese stock-market uncertainty, and these factors are unlikely to last,” said Bernard Dahdahat Natixis SA……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Rare metals: Unobtainiums

Posted on 15 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Many parents will have given their children electric toothbrushes for Christmas, hoping that the sensors that buzz after two minutes will keep them brushing longer than their flimsy elbow grease.
Both generations may, however, be ignorant of the fact that in that time the toothbrushes produce more than 62,000 strokes; that the power to generate such motion comes from tiny magnets using three rare metals, neodymium, dysprosium and boron; and that some of these metals are so coveted that in 2010 they were at the centre of a dangerous rift between China and Japan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

A blueprint for surviving 2016 in the mining sector

Posted on 14 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Following a turbulent 2015 for the mining industry sector, we are providing our 2016 outlook for the base metals and coal, precious metals, uranium, lithium, and graphite sectors. We believe there is still plenty of value in the sector, however, we believe volatility will continue in 2016.
We have provided a blueprint with a list of preferred names for a variety of investors to attempt to navigate through the “minefield”. Lastly we have revised our base metal forecasts. 2015 was no doubt a year to forget for the base metals. The sector was not just volatile, it was violent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Palladium Drops to 5-Year Low as China Demand Concerns Deepen

Posted on 13 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Palladium slumped to a five-year low as Chinese car sales increased at the slowest pace in three years, adding to concerns about weaker demand in one of the world’s biggest buyers of the metal. Gold also fell.
With a faltering economy and turmoil in the stock market hurting consumer confidence, China’s vehicle sales rose 4.7 percent last year, the smallest gain since 2012, China Association of Automobile Manufacturers data show. Palladium futures fell as much as 4.8 percent, while platinum, which is also mainly used in catalytic converters that cut harmful emissions, traded near a seven-year low………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Miners Can’t Cut It in Commodities Rout

Posted on 13 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The mining sector’s mantra has been “when in doubt, cut.” Indeed, chopping investment plans has helped bolster miners, even as commodities prices have tumbled. Some, however, are running out of road.
Look at investment plans relative to companies’ so-called sustaining capital expenditure. The latter, also called “stay-in-business” spending, is a bare-bones figure, the essential maintenance and development needed to maintain mines………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper sinks to lowest since 2009 amid China gloom

Posted on 12 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper prices plummeted on Monday to their lowest in 6-1/2 years as large losses on Chinese equity markets reinforced tarnished prospects for growth and demand in the world’s biggest consumer of industrial metals.
Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange traded down 1.6 percent at $4,412 a tonne in official rings. The metal used in power and construction earlier touched $4,381, its lowest since May 2009. Chinese markets have had a rough start to the year, buffeted by the falling yuan, two days of stock exchange suspensions last week and weak factory and service sector activity surveys………………………………………..Full Article: Source

No end in sight for platinum price slump

Posted on 08 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Platinum prices remain stuck at the lowest levels in seven years and are showing no signs of rebounding. Because of its scarcity, platinum is typically pricier than gold. But it has been about a year since the metals switched places in terms of value.
As leading platinum producer South Africa grapples with currency depreciation, the metal is facing continued selling pressure on the futures market………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Base metals plunge on China worry

Posted on 08 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper fell over 3 per cent on the London Metal Exchange (LME) after China’s composite index slumped 7 per cent on Thursday. Base metals have not recovered after China announced its currency devaluation in August 2015 as the world’s largest consumer of industrial commodities began to slow down. Nickel has plunged 22 per cent on the LME and zinc, copper and aluminium have declined 19 per cent, 11 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively.
On Thursday base metals prices declined by up to 1 per cent on fresh turmoil in the Chinese market. “The ongoing fall in base metals’ prices can be attributed to the fall in the Chinese currency and deflation in the commodities market. Prices of raw materials have not declined as much as finished products, resulting in a stagnating cost of production,” said an analyst with a leading foreign brokerage house………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper, Nickel Rebound as China Intervenes in Stock Market

Posted on 06 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper climbed the most in two weeks and nickel gained after China sought to support its stock market following Monday’s rout that sent metal prices tumbling. State-controlled funds in China bought equities and regulators signaled a selling ban on major investors will remain beyond this week’s expiration date, according to people familiar with the matter.
Most metals traded in London and a gauge of mining shares rose. On Monday, copper fell the most in three weeks, helping take an index of six main contracts on the London Metal Exchange to its biggest slump since September after a plunge in mainland China shares triggered a trading halt……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Upward US steel scrap price momentum carries into January - Metals

Posted on 06 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The January US ferrous scrap market began to take shape Tuesday, as upward pricing momentum that started in mid-December appeared to persist into the new year. Mills spurred a price rise starting last month when they tried to secure early tonnage commitments ahead of any potential January price increase.
Additionally, fourth-quarter mill scrap destocking has generated increased first-quarter demand. “Dealers want to sell; mills want to buy,” one mill buyer said. “I think we will [finalize January] trade Wednesday or Thursday. I think it will settle at $20 up.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Base metal investors may not be able to wake up from this nightmare

Posted on 06 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

You know it’s grim when a sector’s primary bull case involves bankruptcy. Unfortunately for those in the base metals space, “that’s the situation we find ourselves in,” said Edward Meir, senior commodity analyst with INTL FCStone. The just-concluded year of 2015 is one that base metals investors will desperately want to forget.
Amid a dour environment for commodities overall, these industrial metals were among the hardest hit. Aluminum slid 11 percent, copper was down 24 percent, nickel dropped 42 percent, and precious-metal-with-industrial-uses platinum fell 26 percent. With that in mind, observers warn not to expect much in the way of a reprieve………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Miners descend as Chinese factory activity disappoints

Posted on 05 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The UK-listed mining sector began 2016 firmly in the red as the price of copper sank to a two-week low, after weak economic data from China triggered fresh concerns about the world’s largest metals consumer. After slumping 24pc last year, three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange tumbled 2.3pc to $4,599, its lowest level since December 18.
Given their reliance on Asian consumption, mining stocks slipped towards the bottom of the blue-chip index after factory activity in China contracted for a 10th consecutive month in December. The Caixin China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index dipped to 48.2 last month, falling short of expectations that it would hit 49………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What metals will look like in 2016

Posted on 04 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The global commodity free fall played havoc with Indian metal companies in 2015, pushing many to the brink of operational losses and capacity shutdowns. The new year will be crucial to see which way the prices move. Metal manufacturers will also be banking on a pick-up in the domestic economy and some support from the government to fend off cheaper global imports.
In 2015, banks invoked strategic debt restructuring for a number of stressed steel makers. Over the next 18 months, banks will look for buyers for these assets. The availability of assets at potentially reasonable valuations may give larger firms the option to buy assets and consolidate their hold on the markets. Private equity firms which run stressed asset funds may also emerge as buyers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Extra ache earlier than achieve for base metals in 2016

Posted on 04 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Base metals are likely to remain under tremendous pressure in 2016 due to dwindling global demand following a slowdown in the offtake from China, the world’s largest consumer. The impact of production cut, however, may help rebound in their prices in the second half after a subdued price trend in the first half of 2016.
The year 2015 was very painful for base metals quarter with their prices came crashing. Led by nickel, base metals reported up to 42% decline in their prices in 2015. So, the net worth of traders declined proportionately resulting into panic in base metals’ segment. With US having passed through several ups-and-downs with deferments of the US Fed’s scheduled interest rate hikes, traders were skeptical over large positions in base metals………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Base metals seen extending rout into new year

Posted on 04 January 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper and zinc lost a quarter of their value in 2015 while nickel fell by more than 40 per cent as slowing growth in top consumer China, a supply overhang and a strong US dollar hammered industrial metals.
Worries about tighter supplies to come capped lead’s losses at four per cent, while aluminium and tin ceded 19 per cent and 24 per cent respectively, on concern about market surpluses. A rising greenback makes dollar-denominated commodities more expensive for non-US buyers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Uranium: The top-performing mining commodity of 2015

Posted on 30 December 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Despise missing expectations for the year, uranium —the radioactive material used as fuel for power-generation plants— has emerged as the best-performing mining commodity of 2015. Spot uranium prices last traded at $35.80 per pound, less than the expected $40 per pound expected, but on track for gains of 0.85% since starting the year at $35.50/lb, according to Australian investment bank, Macquarie.
The metal that powers nuclear reactors has been gradually recovering from a sharp decline in the wake of Japan’s Fukushima disaster in 2011, and analysts expect the commodity to continue putting a smile on investors’ faces next year, as prices are set to keep climbing………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Supply cuts to provide the floor for nickel in 2016

Posted on 30 December 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nickel prices were battered in 2015 and were the worst-hit among the base metals complex mainly dragged down by plummeting Chinese demand and absence of anticipated shortage following the Indonesian ban in January 2014.
Stainless steel output: Stainless steel production accounts for about two-thirds of nickel demand and hence, slowing demand from the stainless steel industry has hurt the silvery-white base metal the most. The International Stainless Steel Forum showed global production of the alloy dropped in the first nine months of 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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