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Angola is moving into oil’s big leagues as it leaves decades of war behind

Posted on 17 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After decades of sporadic growth and political turmoil, Angola is on the verge of catapulting to the top ranks of the world’s energy economy following major deep-water production investments by several top global oil companies.
France’s Total announced that it planned to proceed with a $16 billion ultra-deep-water project 160 miles off Angola’s northern coast to begin production in 2017. About 185 pipelines located 6,200 feet beneath the ocean will connect 59 wells in six oil fields. Advances in drilling technology have enabled primarily large oil companies to produce oil and gas from reserves 4,000 to 5,000 feet underwater, an impossible task a mere generation ago………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China companies hoard gold for collateral

Posted on 16 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Chinese companies may have accumulated up to 1,000 tonnes of gold for use as collateral in financing deals rather than to meet consumer demand in recent years, a new study says.
The report by the World Gold Council said imported bullion was being used “to raise low-cost funds for business investment and speculation”, and was part of the wider growth in shadow banking in China………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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

Posted on 14 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global crude oil supplies fell month-on-month in March by a steep 1.2 million b/d to 91.75 million b/d, with a decline in output from members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries accounting for near 75% of the loss, according to the International Energy Agency’s most recent Oil Market Report.
Due to sharply lower supplies from Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Libya, OPEC crude oil supplies in March fell 890,000 b/d to just 29.62 million b/d—the lowest level in 5 months………………………………………..Full Article: Source

India may hold key to higher gold prices – Mitsubishi Corp

Posted on 11 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Japanese trading house Mitsubishi Corporation said in a report published today that they retain a neutral to bearish stance on gold’s performance in the second quarter this year, despite the precious metal’s phenomenon gains in quarter one.
“In the light of gold’s performance in Q1, we raise our 2014 gold price forecast upwards by $20 to $1,265 but we remain essentially neutral to bearish on gold’s prospects for the remainder of the year. We anticipate gold will trade on average at $1,300 in Q2,” wrote analyst Jonathon Butler………………………………………..Full Article: Source

US output, potential low demand pose risks to Gulf oil

Posted on 10 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A rapid growth in US oil production combined with potentially weaker global demand present a downside risk to Gulf oil output and prices, the International Monetary Fund warned Tuesday.
But despite an expected drop in their current account surpluses, most Gulf Cooperation Council economies continue to have “substantial buffers” to cope with short-lived price shocks, the IMF said in its World Economic Outlook………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Speculators cut bullish oil bets by most in nine months

Posted on 07 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Fewer than three weeks into spring, oil speculators are already thinking about the summer. Hedge funds and other money managers boosted bullish wagers the most since February, betting that refineries will need to buy more crude to accelerate gasoline output before the peak U.S summer driving season.
Fuel supply is already tight, with consumers paying the most at the pump in seven months. U.S. refineries are processing the most oil since January as plants come out of seasonal maintenance, squeezing crude stockpiles for the first time in 11 weeks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s days of “stealing” the world’s oil and gas are numbered

Posted on 07 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

For years, China’s oil companies PetroChina , Sinopec , and CNOOC have had a major advantage over their integrated major peers, which flummoxed competing oil companies. This advantage has allowed them to gobble up oil and gas assets around the world at premiums well above market price.
Unfortunately for these Chinese companies, it looks like this advantage is ending, and they will need to compete with the rest of the world’s oil and gas producers for assets. Let’s look at what this advantage was, why it may no longer be there, and what this could mean for the energy markets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Russia-Iran oil swap deal gains momentum

Posted on 04 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Russia and Iran are moving closer to a $20 billion oil-for-goods deal launched earlier this year, according to a Reuters report citing unnamed sources close to the deal. Russia has finished preparation of all documents related to the deal on its side, and the deal’s completion now allegedly hinges on an oil price agreement, the source reportedly said.
The deal could eventually be worth $15-$20 billion, but would be completed in increments, with an initial $6-$8 billion transaction, while both sides are still bargaining over the exact nature of a barter deal that would trade Iranian oil for Russian industrial goods and food………………………………Full Article: Source

Resource revenue growth nears end

Posted on 27 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Australian government’s commodities forecaster expects resources export revenue to grow more than 60 per cent to $284.42 billion in the next five years as boomtime LNG and iron ore expansions supply what is expected to be sustained global growth.
But in real terms, which strips out inflation, the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics has declared an end to a long stretch of resources revenue growth in four years…………………………………Full Article: Source

Gold overbought?

Posted on 24 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold rose 1%, it’s first rise in five days, trimming a weekly decline of 2.8%, as the crisis over Ukraine led to a renewed safe haven bid for gold. Palladium surged 3.1% to the highest since 2011 on concern supply from Russia may be restricted.
Gold had become overbought after its surge to 6 month highs and was due profit taking and a correction. A perception of an abatement of tensions between Russia and the West has contributed to the pullback this week. Momentum could lead to further falls next week but we expect weakness will be short lived………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Copper as economy sage fails as growth defies slump: Commodities

Posted on 21 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper, dubbed by traders as the metal with the economics Ph.D., may need a new nickname. While the world economy is forecast to expand by the most in three years, the metal that former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said he once considered a useful indicator is plunging.
Prices in New York are off to the worst start to a year since the Comex futures debuted in 1988. In the past 16 quarters, copper moved in the same direction as global gross domestic product just six times. In December, its correlation to the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was the lowest since 2008………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ukraine crisis as likely to result in lower as higher oil prices

Posted on 20 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Concerns about potential disruption to Russian energy exports initially caused oil and natural gas prices to rise as the crisis in Ukraine unfolded, and they may yet do so again. But global energy prices could eventually end up lower than otherwise if tensions escalate, according to Julian Jessop Chief Global Economist at Capital Economics.
Indeed, the balance of power increasingly favours the West over Russia in the energy sector, just as it long has in finance. In short, Russia is of course a major producer and exporter of both oil and natural gas. Russia exports more than 7 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil and oil products (fuel oil and diesel), representing around 8% of global consumption………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why the precious metals recovery is here to stay and how to play

Posted on 19 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

So far this year, the price of gold has risen by about 15%, while the price of silver has risen by about 7.5% - a reversal of what we were experiencing this time last year. This brings the question of if gold and silver have finally overcome their troubles from last year. I’m of the opinion that they have, for reasons that I’ll argue in this piece.
First, one thing that I find disheartening about this trend, that’s supposed to be enjoyed, is that many seem to think that the positive trend will be short-lived, mostly pointing at the Ukraine crisis as the reason for which the prices of gold and silver is increasing………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is a silver supply deficit on the horizon?

Posted on 18 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Silver, it seems, is everywhere. The precious metal’s dual role as both an investment and industrial metal means that while it can be bought physically or in paper form by investors, it also has myriad technological and medical applications.
It’s in part because of those many uses that some silver market watchers think at some point — perhaps in the near future — demand for the metal will exceed supply, creating a shortage………………………………………..Full Article: Source

OPEC production surges as Iraq pumps most in 35 years, IEA says

Posted on 17 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

OPEC crude production rose above its target for the first time in five months as Iraq pumped the most in 35 years, according to the International Energy Agency.
The 12 members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries produced 30.49 million barrels a day in February, up from 29.99 million in January, the Paris-based IEA said today in its monthly oil market report. That’s about 300,000 barrels a day higher than the average level required in the second half of the year, according to the agency………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nat Gas sees end of peak winter buying in US, fundamentals bearish in Europe: PIRA Energy

Posted on 14 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

NYC-based PIRA Energy Group believes that peak winter buying has been wrapped up. In the U.S., Appalachian shale bottlenecks are increasingly visible. In Europe, gas fundamentals becoming more bearish. Specifically, PIRA’s analysis of natural gas market fundamentals has revealed the following:
Peak winter buying has been wrapped up - In Europe and Asia, peak winter buying has been wrapped up, with the recent Ukraine crisis having little impact. South American and Mideast counter-seasonal buyers are entering the scene, but it appears that in Brazil at least buying will not be as strong as last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is a silver supply shortage on the horizon?

Posted on 14 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Silver, it seems, is everywhere. The precious metal’s dual role as both an investment and industrial metal means that while it can be bought physically or in paper form by investors, it also has myriad technological and medical applications.
It’s in part because of those many uses that some silver market watchers think at some point — perhaps in the near future — demand for the metal will exceed supply, creating a shortage………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SA platinum sector is dead, long live the new platinum sector

Posted on 14 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

What was clear from the presentations and conversations in Toronto during this year’s Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada conference is that the long-term future of South Africa’s platinum sector lies not in the deep-vein, shanty-town-lined mines of old but rather in the newer, shallower mines that afford more opportunities to local communities and for mechanisation.
From a cost point of view, this, at least on paper, was obvious in a slide shown by Mike Jones, CEO of Platinum Group Metals, during his presentation………………………………………..Full Article: Source

OPEC raises oil demand forecast

Posted on 13 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries boosted its closely watched forecast for oil demand growth for the second month in a row Wednesday, despite continuing to warn of possible emerging market headwinds. In its monthly oil market report, the cartel of some of the world’s biggest oil producers upgraded its forecast for demand growth this year by 50,000 barrels a day, after tweaking its expectations higher by the same amount last month.
The producer group now expects oil demand to increase by 1.14 million barrels a day this year, largely as a result of higher consumption in North America, as well as improved demand in Europe and Africa. Total oil demand for 2014 is pegged 91.1 million barrels a day………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mining unlikely to be a fun place to be in 2014 - Wrathall

Posted on 12 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

All manner of sins can be covered up by a bull market: exorbitant salaries, poor returns, bad projects, to name but a few. But, as has been clearly shown over the last few years, we are definitely no longer in a bull market and, some of the sins of the past have come back to haunt mining companies.
Jeremy Wrathall, head of Investec’s Global Natural Resources team, explains that while there has, indeed, been some optimism creeping into the market of late, there is no reason to be wildly optimistic that things are going to return to the halcyon days before 2007………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodities could see a return to the top in 2014

Posted on 11 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

On any investment metric, commodities suffered badly in 2013. The highlight for many being the slump in the gold price from a high of $1,693 (£1,012) an ounce in January 2013 to $1,266 by the end of the year.
On a broader view, the MSCI World Metals and Mining index also struggled woefully in 2013 with a loss of 16.41 per cent compared with the positive return of 24.32 per cent from the MSCI World index. But with the gold price refusing to stay below $1,200 an ounce, and even creeping up to a high of $1,320 on February 14 2014, could this be the start of a turnaround in the sector?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Libya ‘takes control’ of North Korea-flagged oil tanker

Posted on 11 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Libyan officials say they have taken “complete control” of a North Korean-flagged tanker that loaded crude oil at a port occupied by rebel forces. It was stopped as it tried to leave Sidra port but has not yet reached a government-controlled port, they add.
But the rebels, who planned to sell the oil independently of the Libyan state, denied losing control of the tanker. Libya’s parliament earlier ordered a special force to be deployed to “liberate” all rebel-held oil ports………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya threatens to bomb North Korean tanker if it ships oil from rebel port

Posted on 10 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Libya threatened on Saturday to bomb a North Korean-flagged tanker if it tried to ship oil from a rebel-controlled port, in a major escalation of a standoff over the country’s petroleum wealth.
The rebels, who have seized three major Libyan ports since August to press their demands for more autonomy, warned Tripoli against staging an attack to halt the oil sale after the tanker docked at Es Sider terminal, one of the country’s biggest. The vessel started loading crude late at night, oil officials said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Israel to join OPEC?

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An enterprising American named Gideon Tadmor has made a discovery which will put Israel seriously on the energy production map. 30 trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves, not 50 miles off the coast of Israel, set the tiny Middle Eastern nation in a position to, if not actually join OPEC, certainly compete with them.
Even better, for the one nation in the region absolutely aligned with American interests, the USGS says there is at least twice that much, still to be discovered………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dream of U.S. oil independence slams against shale costs

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The path toward U.S. energy independence, made possible by a boom in shale oil, will be much harder than it seems. Just a few of the roadblocks: Independent producers will spend $1.50 drilling this year for every dollar they get back. Shale output drops faster than production from conventional methods.
It will take 2,500 new wells a year just to sustain output of 1 million barrels a day in North Dakota’s Bakken shale, according to the Paris-based International Energy Agency. Iraq could do the same with 60………………………………………..Full Article: Source

All eyes on size of gold price retracements

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The past 16 months haven’t been good times for gold bugs with the yellow metal travelling in a tight downward trend channel since October 2012. This protracted price fall seems to relate to confidence building in the international financial system as the trauma of the global financial crisis (GFC) began to slip from investors’ minds.
That fall followed a three-year run-up in the gold price from $US733 an ounce to about $US1880, experienced during the panic of the GFC when investors ran to gold as a safe port in the storm………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Societe Generale: Auto sales to be key for PGM demand

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Auto sales will be the key to demand for platinum group metals in 2014, more-so than legislation on auto emissions, says Societe Generale. Europe is especially important for platinum demand due to the continent’s use of diesel-powered vehicles that require platinum.
Weakness in the European economy dented this demand in recent years. “That said, with the European economy having exited recession and the economic prospects improving, albeit modestly, coupled with an aging car fleet then there is the potential for a continued steady upturn in European car sales,” Societe Generale says………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Natural gas: What to expect by February-end

Posted on 18 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Barclays is of the opinion that storage deficit in natural gas, when compared to last year would start narrowing by the end of February even as the temperature by that time, beginning its climb from the second half of the month, would put pressure on the prices.
This is to be read in the context of the visible expectation that “sustained prices at about $5/MMBtu will…further decrease natural gas’s competitiveness against coal in the power stack.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

International Energy Agency urges Opec to sustain oil production

Posted on 14 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Opec will need to sustain production at its current level of almost 30m barrels a day if badly depleted oil inventories in the developed world are to be rebuilt, according to the International Energy Agency.
In its widely followed monthly report, the west’s energy watchdog said stronger than expected demand in the US and other industrialised nations had drained oil stocks to the lowest level in five years, tightening the market and supporting prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The golden age of gas, possible says head of IEA

Posted on 12 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The potential for a golden age of gas comes along with a big “if” regarding environmental and social impact. The International Energy Agency (IEA)–the “global energy authority”–believes that this age of gas can be golden, and that unconventional gas can be produced in an environmentally acceptable way.
We didn’t predict a golden age of gas in 2011, we merely asked a pertinent question: namely, are we entering a golden age of gas? And we found that the potential for such a golden age certainly exists, especially given the scale of unconventional gas resources and the advances in technology that allow their extraction………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds raising gold wagers dump copper

Posted on 03 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds raised bullish gold wagers by the most since July and sold copper holdings as emerging-market turmoil boosted concern the global economy will slow and increased demand for precious metals as a haven.
The net-long position in gold jumped 40 percent to 60,672 futures and options in the week ended Jan. 28, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show. Long wagers rose 5.5 percent to the highest since September, and short bets dropped 16 percent. Net-bullish copper holdings tumbled 62 percent as shorts gained by the most in 11 weeks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Wait, we need MORE oil? What happened?

Posted on 29 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

You know who has had a pretty frustrating job lately? People who make projections for oil demand and supplies. Just when we thought that the U.S. was on track to steadily decrease its total oil consumption, recent data from the International Energy Agency basically threw that projection into the rubbish.
So what exactly does this mean for the U.S.? Are we headed back to our gas-guzzling ways, or is this just one of those statistical aberrations that happen from time to time? Let’s take a look at the numbers and see what it could mean………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Don’t poke the gold elephant in the room

Posted on 27 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Big though China is for gold these days, India has remained the elephant shut out of the room. Hence Thursday morning’s pop in London prices. Quickly up $10 per ounce, and then another $10 on top, gold gained after news broke that Sonia Gandhi, leader of India’s Congress Party, apparently wrote to the government, asking to ease its anti-import rules.
Gandhi’s party, the Indian National Congress, is actually in charge, leading New Delhi’s coalition. But Gandhi heads the party, not the government………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Impact of US shale on oil price focus of Saudi talks

Posted on 24 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabia’s oil minister and the head of the International Energy Agency have met in the Kingdom to discuss the effects of growing US shale oil production on global oil prices. The Saudi Press Agency says Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Ali Al-Naimi met IEA Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven in Riyadh on Thursday.
Earlier this week, Al-Naimi was quoted by the Saudi Press Agency as saying that the Kingdom welcomes the new source of energy to keep up with global demand………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iraq only slumping OPEC member, IEA says

Posted on 22 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iraq was the only member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to post a decline in oil production last month, the IEA said Tuesday.
The International Energy Agency, which has headquarters in Paris, said Tuesday oil production from the 12 members of OPEC declined 535,000 barrels per day in December year-on-year. OPEC’s December production, however, was 310,000 bpd higher than the previous month. …………………………….Full Article: Source

Libya, Iraq and China to test OPEC’s resolve in 2014

Posted on 07 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The New Year has started with some decidedly bearish action in the oil market. The price of Brent crude oil, the benchmark for much of the world’s non-U.S. oil trade, has fallen by $5 since the Saudi oil minister, Ali al-Naimi, made his final pronouncement of 2013. “Please don’t talk about cuts,” Mr. Naimi said when asked if OPEC may consider a cut next year. “There are no cuts.”
“People are expecting a shortage in supply, not oversupply,” he said. The new year’s first price movements suggest otherwise, at least in the near term. The daily drip of news from Libya, where oil fields are starting, stopping and starting again like a 30-year-old car, is like catnip to futures investors………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Opec supply risk divides oil strategists

Posted on 02 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

For a third year, international oil prices have gone nowhere. Brent, the global marker, has averaged more than $108 a barrel in 2013 – like it did in 2012 and 2011 – as feared oversupply from the US shale revolution failed to materialise because of production setbacks in other parts of the world.
For many investors who track commodities, and hedge funds who bet on volatility, this has meant poor returns. For investment banks, it has meant a lack of business as consumers see less need to hedge. Only Opec, the producers’ cartel, has been happy, with consistently high revenues………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Watching government: Reconsidering OPEC

Posted on 17 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Soon after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries held its regular ministerial meeting Dec. 4 in Vienna, the usual question was asked: Does its decision to maintain the group’s official production quota level at 30 million b/d even matter?
Non-OPEC production continues to rise. So does global demand, particularly in China, India, and other rapidly industrializing nations. Yet OPEC’s deliberations every 6 months don’t seem to carry the force they once did. One reason may be that it may never have been that effective as a cartel despite the rude awakening consuming nations received when gasoline prices quickly doubled during the 1973 Arab oil embargo, according to one observer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Volcker Rule effect: Gold, Silver fundamentals to matter more

Posted on 13 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Volcker Rule, a provision of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act that prohibits banks from ‘proprietary trading’ will have far reaching impact on gold and silver futures, according to Jeff Nichols, renowned precious metals economist and Managing Director of American Precious Metals Advisors.
The new rule goes into effect from April 1, 2014 and full compiance will be effective from July 21, 2015. According to Jeff Nichols, the Volcker Rule would mean large US banks such as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan will be prohibited from trading gold and silver, including forward, futures and options-except on behalf of customers and not for their own short-term speculative gains………………………………………..Full Article: Source

OPEC pumps least crude in more than 2 years as Saudi cuts

Posted on 11 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

OPEC reduced crude production in November to the lowest level in more than two years as output dropped below the organization’s 30 million barrel-a-day ceiling for a third month.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 29.63 million barrels last month compared with 29.83 million in October, OPEC said in its monthly oil market report today, citing data from secondary sources. That’s the lowest since May 2011. The group decided to maintain its output limit of 30 million at a meeting in Vienna last week because members were “all satisfied,” Ali al-Naimi, Saudi Arabia’s oil minister, told reporters on Dec. 4………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Soft commodities ‘better bet than grains’ for 2014

Posted on 10 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Soft commodities look a better bet for gains than grains in 2014, with cocoa to hit three-year highs, Commerzbank said, forecasting a waning performance by livestock futures.
Among the main grains and oilseed contracts, only Chicago corn will managed headway next year, boosted by the prospect of a drop in US sowings next year, as weak prices prompt farmers to seek alternative crops………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Opec faces up to new challenges

Posted on 06 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Opec may meet twice a year in its secretariat building in central Vienna, but the activity around delegates’ hotels in the days beforehand arguably reveals much more about the internal dynamics of the cartel.
Judging by the scenes in the Austrian capital this week Saudi Arabia remains king of Opec, but Iran is well and truly back………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Whatever happened to doctor copper?

Posted on 05 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Three or four years ago, as the global economy began the long haul out of a major recession, it seemed that those who follow financial news couldn’t escape articles waxing lyrical about the predictive powers of copper. The price of the metal was rising and that, we were told, showed that those in the know saw rising industrial demand and therefore an end to the dark days.
Doctor Copper was hailed as the ultimate diagnostician. So, as the recovery has continued, albeit slowly, it would be logical to expect the copper price to have continued rising, right?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

European oil giants to talk terms with Iran

Posted on 02 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil ministry officials from Tehran to meet executives from European oil companies and industry experts in London early next year to present the terms upon which they will be invited back.
Iran is stepping up its engagement with European oil companies ahead of inviting them back to the country amid signs that a recent deal over its nuclear programme could see economic sanctions lifted next year………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iran opens contacts with oil groups

Posted on 27 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iran’s oil ministry has opened contacts with western majors as the government of Hassan Rouhani tries to capitalise on progress in nuclear talks and encourage companies to prepare for an eventual lifting of sanctions.
Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, the veteran oil minister who has returned to government after an eight-year absence, told the Financial Times he had held meetings with European companies and “indirectly” with US firms with a view to inviting them back to Iran………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How much longer can these miners survive lower gold prices?

Posted on 26 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As the gold price continues to decline, gold miners are struggling to remain profitable. Indeed, as I write the price of gold is nearing three-year lows of $1,200 per ounce. During the second quarter of this year, about 25% of 67 gold-producing companies, representing roughly 44% of worldwide gold output, were losing money on a cash-flow basis.
This has led to deep cost cutting throughout the gold industry. The question remains, however, how much further can these cost cuts go?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Saudi Arabia welcomes U.S. shale, sees no need to cut output

Posted on 21 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia remains unconcerned by surging U.S. shale output, which threatens to eat into OPEC’s market share, and sees no need to cut production to support prices, its deputy oil minister said on Wednesday.
“We need to make sure that the world economy comes out decisively on a growth pattern and, if that can be established, I think that the world economic growth will be sufficient to handle growth from all sorts - shale oil, shale gas, tight oil and including renewable,” Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz told a conference in Dubai…………………………………Full Article: Source

IEA world oil and gas outlook - 2035 (Analysis)

Posted on 18 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Shale will not significantly boost oil production or bring down prices in the long term, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The surprising findings are contained in the latest version of the agency’s annual World Energy Outlook (WEO).
Worldwide production of light tight oil (LTO) from shale and other formations requiring fracking is expected to grow from 2 million barrels per day in 2012 to just 5.8 million bpd by 2030, before declining slightly to 5.6 million bpd in 2035………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Precious metals- the wheels are turning and you can’t slow down

Posted on 18 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

We are aboard a speeding train that cannot speed up - neither can it slow down - due to fiat, default, and what will be remembered as the greatest credit fiasco in history. And the road is ending just up ahead. You can’t go back and you can’t stand still…
Speed is a 1994 American action-thriller movie directed by Jan de Bont. The film stars Keanu Reeves, Dennis Hopper, Sandra Bullock and Jeff Daniels. The movie hinges on a bus rigged with explosives that will be armed if the bus exceeds 50 miles per hour. The explosives will detonate if the bus falls below that speed or if an attempt is made to offload the passengers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

To get transparent commodity pricing, China must give up control: Clyde Russell

Posted on 15 November 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s leadership plenum may have disappointed with sparse details about economic reforms, but there was enough to suggest the potential for major changes in way the country buys and trades commodities.
The key elements from this week’s meeting of the ruling Communist Party’s Central Committee were that markets would take a “decisive” role and that this would happen by 2020………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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