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Iraq oil minister sees $70 crude by end 2015

Posted on 27 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iraq’s Oil Minister Adel Abdel Mehdi predicted world oil prices could reach $70 a barrel by the end of 2015 and played down the impact of the emerging conflict in Yemen on prices. A global slump in oil prices has slashed government revenue in Iraq, prompting the OPEC producer to renegotiate contracts with oil majors as it faces a costly military campaign against Islamic State militants.
“In January prices reached the bottom and they can’t go any lower than that,” Abdel Mehdi told Reuters in an interview on Thursday. “Now they’re going up, slowly but steadily. They will go up and maybe reach $70 by the end of the year”. Brent oil rallied for a second straight day on Thursday to more than $59 a barrel after Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies launched air strikes in Yemen, sparking fears of a wider regional confrontation that could disrupt world crude supplies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Further downside on gold prices limited – CPM

Posted on 27 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

This time of year usually sees the release of three major analytical reports on the gold market – from CPM in the USA and from Metals Focus and GFMS in the UK – and CPM’s Jeff Christian kindly let me have a copy of the former’s analysis which was released earlier this week.
The CPM Gold Yearbook comprises over 250 pages, mostly of statistics and comment, some of which most will agree with whether from the bullish or bearish factor of gold followers, whereas other elements may raise the hackles, particularly of the gold ultra bulls for whom Christian and his team are bêtes noires – primarily because Christian is an adamant anti-gold price manipulation standard bearer, and is prepared to defend his position right in the lion’s den on occasions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold price leaps past $1,200 on safe haven buying

Posted on 27 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Amid nervousness on US bond and equity markets which are back in negative territory for the year and a spike in oil prices sparked by chaos in the Middle East gold leaped past the psychologically important $1,200 an ounce level on Thursday.
Gold for delivery in June – the most active futures contract – gained $21.76 or 1.8% hitting a high of $1,219.76 early on, before pulling back in early afternoon trade in New York to around $1,206 an ounce, still a three-week high. The gold price is up more than 6% after dropping to a 2015 low of $1,148.20 an ounce last week and has now retraced almost 40% of its losses since the 2015 high above $1,300 reached in January………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Morgan Stanley Copper Price Outlook

Posted on 27 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The copper price has started to bounce back from its drastic fall at the start of the year, climbing more than 6 percent over the past month. However, Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) has cut its 2015 price forecast for the metal by roughly 16 percent, to $5,945 per tonne, on the back of lackluster demand from China.
The firm remains convinced that base metals will outperform bulk commodities such as coal, but in a report it expresses concern that seasonal demand from China has failed to pick up as expected. In the report, analysts Tom Price and Joel Crane state that far from expanding trade in response to “a growing list of government approved property and infrastructure projects,” the metals processing industry in China “remains dormant” and is “actually sidelining capacity.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Call option trades target return of $100 US crude oil

Posted on 26 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The prospect of a return to $100-a-barrel crude is tempting some to bet against the bearish consensus in the oil market. One or more traders have resumed buying call options that pay out if benchmark US crude futures surpass $100 by the end of 2018. Call options give holders the right to buy oil at a set price by a certain date.
Open interest in these options has risen to the equivalent of 2.7m barrels, nearly trebling from the start of the month. The bullish positions run counter to the downbeat sentiment that pervades the oil market. Despite cutbacks in drilling, the price of West Texas Intermediate crude for December 2018 delivery was $64.25 a barrel on Wednesday. This specific futures contract last traded above $100 a barrel in mid-2011, while spot US crude oil was at that level last July………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global Demand To Help Oil Prices Despite U.S. Glut- Senior Gulf OPEC Delegate

Posted on 26 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The comments appear to counter some market forecasts that the U.S. oil glut may push prices to as low as $20-$30. Stronger-than-expected global oil demand should help support crude prices at around $55-$60 a barrel in the next two months despite some signs of a growing glut in the United States, a senior Gulf OPEC delegate told Reuters on Tuesday.
The comments appear to counter some market forecasts that the U.S. oil glut may push prices to as low as $20-$30 and are a sign that the core Gulf OPEC members remain confident about their strategy of defending market share. “Global demand is definitely growing much stronger than expected. In December, January, and especially February it was beyond what forecasts anticipated,” the delegate said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

HSBC ‘cautiously optimistic’ of gold price outlook in 2015

Posted on 26 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

HSBC is “cautiously optimistic” of the gold price outlook for 2015, predicting a trading range of $1,120/oz-$1,305/oz with an average price of $1,234/oz, the bank said late Tuesday, March 24. “The possibility that deflationary pressures could bring on negative rates in some economies helps reaffirm our cautiously optimistic view on gold,” head analyst James Steel said.
However, in Steel’s view gold prices are not “entirely hostage” to monetary developments. “The recent price slump below $1,150/oz may be encouraging greater demand from price sensitive emerging market buyers, notably, but not exclusively, in India and China,” Steel said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bank of America: Gold Price Could Hit $1,300 by May

Posted on 26 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

CNBC reported that MacNeil Curry, the Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s head of global technical analysis, believes that a near-term correction in the US dollar and declining yields on Treasuries may lead to a “sustained and sizable” gold price rally. The yellow metal might even rise above $1,300 per ounce by the end of May.
As quoted in the market news: ‘Rates are headed lower, and the dollar is likely to remain in a corrective sequence in general,’ said Curry. ‘Gold should rally in that environment.’ According to Curry’s chart work, gold has been in a ‘sizable corrective phase’ since November 2014. But recently, the yellow metal has shown signs of life. Moreover, Curry points out that gold’s inverse relationship to the dollar appears have broken down, which he interprets as another bullish sign for bullion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Here’s How $20 Oil Could Become a Reality If Storage Runs Out

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There’s the makings of a crisis swirling in America’s oil-storage tanks, and the next few months will determine whether it’s a minor annoyance, or a major blow, to U.S. oil. The basic problem is that too much oil is being pumped, and not enough is being used up. America is running out of places to store all of the excess crude. That’s a problem, and it could send prices plummeting — some say to $20 a barrel or even lower. (For context: Last summer it was more than $100, and today it’s less than $50.)
That’s probably not going to happen, but it’s not as crazy as it might first sound. Stockpiles are at record-high volumes after 10 straight weeks of increases. The U.S. is currently accumulating an extra one to two million barrels a day more than its using. The oil imbalance is bad, and it’s still getting worse………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why oil could be going back to $70

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil has fallen too far too fast, and benchmark Brent crude could be back at $70 or $80 per barrel, the CEO of Signal Investment Research said Tuesday. Stephen Davis said he sees oil prices bouncing $10 In the next three to six months and believes prices could go much higher.
“The price of [Brent] oil has come down $55, which is a huge amount for the amount that we’re oversupplied,” he said. “People think it’s just because we’re oversupplied, but there’s a lot of reasons why we’re oversupplied, and those factors will reverse.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Why current oil prices don’t tell the energy sector’s whole fortune

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors in the Canadian energy sector have certainly felt the pain of plunging oil prices, as the S&P/TSX Energy Index is down more than 25% since June 2014, but some say things could be worse.
Oil has fallen roughly 60% during the same period, after peaking near US$107 per barrel, yet Canadian Natural Resources Ltd., Suncor Energy Inc. and other names in the benchmark Canadian energy index are still trading at a lofty 65x forecasted fourth-quarter earnings………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold Prices Seen Declining by CPM for Third Straight Year

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold prices will fall for a third straight year in 2015 as concern eases that global economies will falter, curbing demand for the metal as a haven, according to CPM Group.
Bullion futures on the Comex in New York will probably average $1,208 an ounce in 2015, Jeffrey Christian, CPM managing director, said Monday in an interview, a day before the release of the research company’s “Gold Yearbook.” That would be down 4.6 percent from 2014, according to CPM………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global gold price setting arrives in the 21st century

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A new era of gold pricing and Kuwait’s budgetary concerns are the issues in this edition of Business Middle East. Better late than never, the gold market has entered the digital era, joining other precious metals in the 21st century.
Criticism of an archaic global price fixing system intensified with some claiming it lacked credibility. Following numerous fines on international banks due to scandals of price manipulation, gold traders may now have more peace of mind with a new electronic system to manage price setting………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold is going to $1,300 by May: BofA technician

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold has risen for five straight sessions and is now positive on the year. And according to one top technician, the rally has just begun. Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s head of global technical analysis, MacNeil Curry, said a near-term “correction” in the dollar over the “next couple of weeks,” paired with declining yields on Treasurys, should lay the groundwork for a sustained and sizable rally in gold that could see it break above $1,300 by the end of May.
“Rates are headed lower, and the dollar is likely to remain in a corrective sequence in general,” said Curry. “Gold should rally in that environment.” According to Curry’s chart work, gold has been in a “sizable corrective phase” since November 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iron ore price jumps past $US55

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The price of iron ore has again surged past $US55 a tonne, after it had held below that mark for three out of the prior four trading sessions. At the end of the latest offshore session, benchmark iron ore for immediate delivery to the port of Tianjin in China was trading at $US55.60 a tonne, up 2.6 per cent from its prior close of $US54.20 a tonne.
The positive showing was its second best gain for the year to date, but the commodity remains nearly 60 per cent off where it was at the start of 2014 and over 20 per cent below where it started this year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The price of oil is going lower: Trader

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With OPEC signaling over the weekend that it would not change course and cut production, expect oil prices to fall even lower, trader Jeff Kilburg said Monday. Traders are “looking for more of a bearish short-term output,” the founder of KKM Financial said.
On Sunday, Saudi Arabia’s oil minister said it will not take sole responsibility for propping up the oil price and will keep production unchanged. Kilburg said the kingdom is actually producing more oil, noting the oil minister said it is pumping about 350,000 more barrels of crude a day………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Crude oil prices heading to $35 by June: FGE

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global crude oil prices could trade between $35 to $40 a barrel by the end of the second-quarter of 2015, according to one of the world’s leading oil experts. Prices could even dip beyond those levels for a brief period, warned Fereidun Fesharaki, chairman of FACTS Global Energy (FGE).
Brent crude was trading 1.63% lower to $54.42 a barrel at 08.26am on 23 March. US crude was trading 2.10% lower to 45.59 a barrel. The outlook could get worse if the US and Iran reach a nuclear deal. A former energy advisor to Iran, Fesharaki believes there is an 80% chance of the deal going though before the 31 March deadline, which could see a further $5 drop in oil prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil Starts Move Down to $20

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

CNBC ran an article about a prediction by FACTS Global Energy that oil could drop to $35 a barrel soon, and then go much lower. Saudi officials say they will keep production at the levels they are now. Slowing economies in the European Union and China will cripple demand for crude. Citigroup analysts have not retracted their prediction that oil will drop to $20. The forecasts of a collapse of oil prices, so loud in February, have returned.
While some of the forecasts for the fall in oil prices are bogus, others have some merit. Perhaps companies holding crude will find more tankers to keep oil out at sea. No one knows how many tankers that might be, or whether their capacity has been filled………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Keeping oil below $100 will shut shale out of market, says Saudi official

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil prices won’t rebound to $100 a barrel because increased prices would draw more shale and other output from higher-cost producers to the market, said Mohammad al-Madi, Saudi Arabia’s governor to OPEC. “I think it will be difficult to reach $100 or $120 another time,” Madi said at a conference in Riyadh on Sunday. “This will let the high-cost producers come back again.”
Saudi Arabia, the nation leading OPEC in defending its share of the global oil market, will keep investing to maintain its current output capacity, he said. Brent oil, the global benchmark, declined almost 50 percent in the past year as Saudi Arabia and others in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries committed to maintaining output amid a global surplus. U.S. output is the highest in three decades as drillers pump crude from shale………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil won’t breach $100 again - OPEC exec

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil prices won’t rebound to $100 a barrel because increased prices would draw more shale and other output from higher-cost producers to the market, according to Saudi Arabia’s governor to OPEC.
“I think it will be difficult to reach $100 or $120 another time,” Mohammed al-Madi said at a conference in Riyadh yesterday. “This will let the high-cost producers come back again.” Saudi Arabia, the nation leading OPEC in defending its share of the global oil market, will keep investing to maintain its current output capacity, he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Lower oil prices proving a bonus for China even as demand falls

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The “new normal” of lower growth that premier Li Keqiang talks about is also having an impact on demand for oil and other commodities. Lower prices for oil and other commodities are delivering China serious savings in its purchases of oil, iron ore and copper – by some estimates up to €232 billion a year.
At the same time, China, the world’s number two oil consumer, topped up its strategic petroleum reserves last year with cheap crude and now the tanks are nearly full. China’s goal is to fill the tanks to have a 90-day supply by 2020, from a current level of 30-40 days………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold Prices Will Hit Record On Surging Asian Demand, ANZ Says

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With Japan all set to become the sole owner of Japanese government bonds and equity ETFs and with ECB officials explicitly promising to print euros until the market finally gives up and submits to “monetary dominance,” the utility of owning a barbarous yellow relic may be less clear as it appears that the path to eternal prosperity runs parallel to the road where printing worthless paper to buy other worthless paper somehow doesn’t dead end at the intersection of “absolutely broke” and “massive bubble.”
Be that as it may, there are still some analysts out there who believe owning an asset that can’t be printed by central planners is probably not a bad idea in an era where the CBs of the world have driven the idea of a “market” to the edge of extinction. When you couple that with EM CB demand and cultural dynamics in Asia, you’ve got the recipe for surging prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Societe Generale trims average gold price forecast to $925 per Oz

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The French Bank Societe Generale in its latest report forecasts that gold prices having given away all its early year gains is headed further lower, as dollar gains strength. SocGen expects the bear market in gold to continue further. The gold prices are likely to average at $925 per Oz between 2016 and 2019.
According to the report, gold is likely to average at $1,150 per Oz during the second quarter of the year. The weakness in prices will extend to the fourth quarter, with gold prices expected to average at $1,050 per Oz. However, the full year 2015 gold price forecast has been lifted from earlier $1,025 per Oz to $1,130 per Oz mainly due to the strong rally in prices during Q1 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What Investors Need to Know About the LBMA Gold Price

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When the London silver fix came to an end last year after operating for more than a century, many market watchers wondered if the London gold fix would be next. Ultimately, the answer turned out to be “yes.” The London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) decided in November to put ICE Benchmark Administration in charge of the fix, stating that it would take over in the first quarter of 2015 and noting that an electronic system would be put in place.
Q1 is now here, and March 20, 2015 is the day ICE will officially take the reins. Here’s a breakdown of what exactly that transition will mean for investors and for the gold price. Similar to the London silver fix, the London gold fix came into existence nearly a century ago — in 1919, to be exact. Currently, the price-setting process involves four banks — Barclays, HSBC, Societe Generale and the Bank of Nova Scotia — engaging in two conference calls a day to fix the gold price………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Return to $100 Oil Seen Unlikely by Saudis Amid Shale Surge

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil prices won’t rebound to $100 a barrel because increased prices would draw more shale and other output from higher-cost producers to the market, said Mohammed al-Madi, Saudi Arabia’s governor to OPEC.
“I think it will be difficult to reach $100 or $120 another time,” al-Madi said at a conference in Riyadh on Sunday. “This will let the high-cost producers come back again.” Saudi Arabia, the nation leading OPEC in defending its share of the global oil market, will keep investing to maintain its current output capacity, he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

OPEC won’t support oil’s price alone, says Saudi minister

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

OPEC will not take sole responsibility for propping up the oil price, Saudi Arabia’s oil minister said on Sunday, signalling the world’s top petroleum exporter is determined to ride out a market slump that has roughly halved prices since last June.
Last November, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries kingpin Saudi Arabia persuaded members to keep production unchanged to defend market share. The move accelerated an already sharp oil price drop from peaks last year of more than $100 (U.S.) a barrel that was precipitated by an oversupply of crude and weakening demand………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Keeping oil below $100 will shut shale out of market: Saudi official

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil prices won’t rebound to $100 a barrel because increased prices would draw more shale and other output from higher-cost producers to the market, said Mohammad al-Madi, Saudi Arabia’s governor to OPEC. “I think it will be difficult to reach $100 or $120 another time,” Madi said at a conference in Riyadh on Sunday. “This will let the high-cost producers come back again.”
Saudi Arabia, the nation leading OPEC in defending its share of the global oil market, will keep investing to maintain its current output capacity, he said. Brent oil, the global benchmark, declined almost 50 percent in the past year as Saudi Arabia and others in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries committed to maintaining output amid a global surplus. U.S. output is the highest in three decades as drillers pump crude from shale………………………………………..Full Article: Source

LBMA Gold Price successfully launched

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The LBMA Gold Price has replaced the historic London Gold Fix. The first LBMA Gold Price settled at $1,171.75. ICE Benchmark Administration (IBA) administers the “LBMA Gold Price”. They provide the auction platform, methodology as well as overall independent administration and governance for the LBMA Gold Price. The LBMA holds the intellectual property rights.
The London Gold Fix pricing mechanism has been replaced by a new electronic LBMA price-discovery process from Friday, 20th March 2015. The price continues to be set twice daily (at 10:30 and 15:00 London GMT). The new LBMA Gold Price is operated and administered by an independent third party provider, ICE Benchmark Administration (IBA), who were chosen following consultation with market participants………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How Indian gold prices are fixed

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

How are the benchmark prices for gold in India fixed? The truth is that there is no commonly accepted benchmark. Given that there is no physical market where gold is bought and sold, participants still rely on informal gold price quotes disseminated by the jewellery trade.
The gold imported into the country is brought in through the nominated agencies, mainly banks. Banks supply this gold to bullion dealers, at a price that includes customs duty after adding a fee to it. The IBJA- Indian Bullion Jewellers Association, a Mumbai-based association of gold dealers, then announces a rupee price for gold every day based on quotes from its member dealers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Iron ore price bounces to $US55

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iron ore has enjoyed a rare positive session after a tumultuous week that saw the commodity sink below $US55 a tonne for the first time since 2009. At the end of the latest offshore session, benchmark iron ore for immediate delivery to the port of Tianjin in China was trading at $US55.00 a tonne, up 0.9 per cent from a six-year low of $US54.50 a tonne.
However, the metals bulletin price for iron ore delivered to the port of Qingdao, another closely-watched spot market, was 0.6 per cent weaker at $54.66. Over the last month the commodity has given up about 15 per cent of its value, the latest sign of turbulence after a horror 2014 that saw its price cut in half………………………………………..Full Article: Source

India Uses Oil Price Drop To Fill Strategic Reserves

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s fourth biggest oil consumer, India last month built its first underground SPR in Andhra Pradesh. India is set to import 8 million barrels of Iraqi oil to fill its first strategic petroleum reserve (SPR), taking advantage of cheap prices and lending some support to a market suffering from oversupply.
India’s SPR purchases could temporarily help offset the impact of an expected pause in China’s strategic stocks build and the start of spring maintenance at Asian refiners. India’s oil ministry on Tuesday instructed state refiners Indian Oil Corp and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd to each seek two very large crude carriers (VLCC) of Basra oil for arrival in May-June, totalling 8 million barrels, two sources familiar with the matter said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What Moves Gold Prices?

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The price of gold is moved by a combination of supply, demand and investor behavior. That seems simple enough, but the way those factors work together is sometimes counterintuitive. Many investors, for example, think of gold as an inflation hedge. That has some common sense plausibility — paper money loses value as more is printed. But the supply of gold is relatively constant. As it happens mining doesn’t add much year to year.
Two economists, Claude B. Erb of the National Bureau of Economic Research and Campbell Harvey, a professor at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, studied the price of gold in relation to several factors. It turns out gold doesn’t correlate well to inflation………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The way gold prices are set is changing forever

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Almost a century of tradition will disappear from the gold market as technology takes over. Thursday will be the last day that traders at four banks agree by phone twice-daily prices used by miners to central banks to deal and value bullion.
Gold will be the last precious metal to drop the London fixings after silver, platinum and palladium made way for electronic auctions last year. More firms able to participate in the benchmark will make the $18 trillion global market more transparent, said ICE Benchmark Administration, which will start running the LBMA Gold Price on Friday .Anyone can follow auctions online, rather than needing a line to a fixing dealer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Silver to trend towards $14/oz by year-end – SocGen forecast

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The silver price will struggle going forward as the Federal Reserve starts hiking interest rates from June onwards, Société Générale said in a report. The French Bank expects that the Fed will raise interest rates by 25 basis points in June 2015, with this more likely followed by another hike of a similar magnitude later this year.
“As the labour markets gain traction and with the forecast for GDP growth at 3.5 percent this year, we see a high probability of a more aggressive rate hike during next year, to an extent that the interest rate cycle could peak at four percent by the end of 2017,” iSocGen said. Against a backdrop of a strengthening US economy, the bank predicts that the upward trajectory of the US dollar against most currencies will continue over the course of the year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Everything you want to know about falling oil prices

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Why is the oil price falling? Mostly because of increased supply from America—up by 4m barrels a day since 2009. Although most crude exports are still banned, American imports have plummeted, contributing to a glut on world markets. Other producers have decided not to try to curb their production and keep the price up.
Why? The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries is dominated by Gulf producers, notably Saudi Arabia. They have huge reserves to cushion the impact of low prices. They also hope that the slump will eventually shut down high-cost production, tightening the market again………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil prices rebound sharply after Fed move

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil prices staged a sharp rebound after the US Federal Reserve scrapped its low-rates guidance on Wednesday, weakening the dollar. US crude had marked a fresh six-year low earlier on Wednesday before the Fed ended a monetary policy committee meeting by dropping a pledge to be “patient” before raising rates, but cutting growth and inflation forecasts.
The new message pushed down the dollar, which tends to move in the opposite direction to commodities that are priced in dollars. Nymex April West Texas Intermediate crude, the US oil yardstick, rose $1.20 to settle at $44.66, erasing losses caused by data showing surging oil inventories inside the US………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Crude Oil Prices Drop Again, but They’re Unlikely to Hit $20

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The most pessimistic prediction has come from Citibank, which has said crude oil could fall as low as $20 a barrel this year, but prospects for $20 oil are as unlikely as the predictions for $60 oil were only a few weeks ago when it looked like an imminent and sustained recovery was just over the horizon. Fundamentally, there is little to stop oil’s slide right now. An interim January low of $43 was broken on Wednesday, and the chart analysts are finding it difficult to predict a bottom.
Oil stockpiles are still increasing, with 458 million barrels in storage, by far a new record. At the rate of increases in stockpiles, it is estimated that storage will be completely used up by the middle of May. With virtually nowhere to put oil, prices will again have nowhere to go but down………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil price slump is choking this OPEC economy

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Plunging oil prices are taking a heavy toll on one of Africa’s top producers. Nigeria’s currency is trading at a record low against the U.S. dollar, the stock market has slumped 15% this year — making it the worst performer in Africa — and financial reserves are being depleted.
“It’s going to be a very difficult year,” Nigeria’s Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala told CNN. “We’ve had a more than 50% fall in the price of oil and that has naturally impacted the economy.” Nigeria is currently pumping about 1.8 million barrels of crude oil per day, making it OPEC’s 7th biggest producer — alongside Angola………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold price to double by 2030 thanks to Asia

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Asia’s financial system liberalization and its population’s growing wealth are two key factors expected to boost demand for gold and push the price of the key commodity over US$2,400 an ounce by 2030, a report published Wednesday claims. According to the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) predictions, as incomes rise across Asia, particularly in China and India, so will the appetite for gold rings and necklaces.
In its report “East to El Dorado: Asia and the Future of Gold,” ANZ estimates that annual retail and investor demand for the precious metal in the 10 largest economies in Asia could double to 5,000 tonnes within 15 years. The bank dubbed these nations “the A10″ – China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Way Gold Prices Are Set is Changing Forever

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Almost a century of tradition will disappear from the gold market as technology takes over. Thursday will be the last day that traders at four banks agree by phone twice-daily prices used by miners to central banks to deal and value bullion. Gold will be the last precious metal to drop the London fixings after silver, platinum and palladium made way for electronic auctions last year.
More firms able to participate in the benchmark will make the $18 trillion global market more transparent, said ICE Benchmark Administration, which will start running the LBMA Gold Price on Friday. Anyone can follow auctions online, rather than needing a line to a fixing dealer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Asian demand set to lift gold price to above $US2400 by 2030: ANZ

Posted on 18 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The gold price could hit above $US2400 an ounce by 2030 on the back of the growing wealth of Asia’s populations, a major new study predicts. ANZ’s chief economist, Warren Hogan, one of the authors of the new report, said the Asian Century would have profound implications for the gold market.
He predicted a growing Asian middle class would buy more jewellery, a larger body of professional money managers would drive investment demand and regional central banks would purchase more gold to provide confidence in newly floated currencies. “These factors will, in our view, support a long term and significant increase in the gold price,” he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Will Gold Follow Oil and Fall Back Under $1,000?

Posted on 18 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The drop in the price of oil has been monumental, and the oil and gas sector is starting to prepare for some much leaner times ahead. The question to ask is what really lies ahead in the larger picture, outside of oil. With the dollar rallying and with economic numbers slowing, what are the odds that gold takes a dive like oil did? Also, how correlated should the two assets be today versus in the past?
Knowing an answer here may require a crystal ball. Still, investors and speculators should start to consider whether gold could or would take on the same sort of sentiment as oil………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil plunges to a 6-year low. Is $30 a barrel next?

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Extremely cheap oil is back, and it may get even cheaper. Crude plunged 4% to as low as $42.85 a barrel on Monday. That’s the lowest price since March 2009 and marks the fifth consecutive day of losses. This should bring smiles to the faces of the millions of American drivers who have watched gasoline prices creep higher in recent weeks.
A month ago, people were talking about an “oil comeback.” Now that looks like just a mirage. More and more analysts predict prices of $40 or lower, at least in the near term. “I think the market almost has to have a $30-handle on it before it gets this out of its system,” said Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service………………………………………..Full Article: Source

One key reason why oil prices may have further to fall

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Crude prices may be in a holding pattern for the time being, but the conditions under which they appear to have stabilized are anything but reassuring. Despite a saturated world market, North American production, whether it’s bitumen from Alberta’s oil sands or light oil from North Dakota or Texas, continues to increase. So why haven’t prices, in the face of all this supply, continued to fall?
The answer is storage or, more precisely, the record amount of oil that’s being poured into U.S. storage tanks and salt caverns, despite inventory levels that are already at all-time highs. Putting oil into storage is attractive to oil companies right now for two reasons. First, it effectively takes excess oil out of an already glutted market, which alleviates downward pressure on spot prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How the gold price will defy the skeptics and stage a huge comeback

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The dollar has staged such a stellar performance since the start of the year there is now an almost universal acclamation of its strength and a consensus that parity with the euro is very close. A strong dollar means a low gold price, or does it? Gold is actually one of the world’s best performing currencies this year, off just a couple of per cent compared with double-digits for the euro.
Dollar crash coming? That said if the dollar crashed then gold prices would undoubtedly surge as the only credible rival safe haven currency, except perhaps the Swiss franc. Where the gold skeptics have the argument wrong is their belief in the almighty dollar………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Poll: What determines the price of gold?

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold prices remained under pressure on Monday as the dollar stormed higher ahead of the Federal Reserve meeting this week. Speculation is swirling that chair Janet Yellen will remove the word “patient” from the FOMC’s post-meeting statement on Wednesday, paving the way for a rate hike in June.
In early Asian trade, spot gold slipped 0.2 percent to $1,155.36 an ounce, but marking a slight rebound from a more than three-month low of $1,147.10 attained last Wednesday after speculation of a sooner-than-expected rate hike sapped appetite for the precious metal………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds cut bullish gold price bets 60% since January

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Large scale speculators in gold futures added massively to short positions – bets that prices will fall – ahead of Wednesday’s Federal Reserve meeting that will to set the tone for the gold market. On Monday the gold price held above the crucial $1,150 an ounce support level – likely to be severely tested in two days time if the US central banks’ Federal Open Market Committee pronouncements on rate hikes foresee a sooner-rather-than-later scenario.
The gold price closed below $1,150 during only two sessions in early November, but soon bounced back. For a sustained period of sub-$1,150 gold you have to go back to April 8, 2010………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is Gold About To Plunge To $1,000 Or Even Lower?

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Since warning about a possible correction in gold and silver in late-January, gold has fallen by $125 and silver by $1.64. Though I am a longer-term fan of precious metals, I have been concerned in recent years about the risks posed by the ending of the commodities supercycle as well as the rising U.S. dollar, which trades inversely with precious metals and other commodities.
I intend to invest in precious metals for the longer run, but I have been waiting for the current bearish cycle to run its course before I commit. Like any investor, my goal is to get the most for my money, so I have been analyzing precious metals carefully to determine when they have finally bottomed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Africa sets its sights beyond commodities

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The collapse of commodity prices has hit resource-dependent African countries hard, but it is forcing them towards economic diversification, presenting fresh opportunities for outside investors. The big bang in demand for raw materials, driven mostly by China, has been good for African mineral producers. Too good perhaps, as little effort was made during the boom years to lock in gains by diversifying.
Of Africa’s 54 countries, 24 rely on a select few mineral products to generate more than 75 per cent of their export earnings, according to a study by the African Development Bank (ADB). A further 20 countries that do not have much in the way of resources still managed to grow by more than 4 per cent, as regional benefits spilt across national boundaries………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Asian Buyers Seize on Oil-Price Spread

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It isn’t just the sharp drop in crude prices since last summer that has roiled the global oil industry. It is the way they have fallen. During the slump, U.S. oil prices have dropped further relative to Brent prices traded on London’s Intercontinental Exchange.
That has made it increasingly attractive for crude buyers in Asia to purchase oil from places such as Latin America, where producers set selling prices in line with the U.S.’s main West Texas Intermediate benchmark, instead of traditional providers in the Middle East that price off Brent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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