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Commodities Briefing 25.Feb 2009

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From FT: Barack Obama’s choice to lead the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has vowed to tackle the kind of speculation that many blamed for last year’s sky-high oil prices and volatile swings across agricultural markets.

Gary Gensler, a former US Treasury official and partner at Goldman Sachs, has also pledged to help bring transparency to the hitherto unregulated market for credit default swaps, which many claim exacerbated the financial crisis….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Gulf-times.com: Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) – the investment arms of cash-rich nations such as China and Qatar – are poised to raise their holdings of commodities and oil in a move that could have a huge impact on financial markets.

Sitting on up to $4tn in assets, much of it from selling oil and other raw materials, most SWFs have so far been conservative in their investment choices, holding dollars, treasuries and shares in large US and European companies….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From BBC: Farmers in developing countries are struggling despite recent rises in the price of commodities they produce, the Fairtrade Foundation says in a new report.

The report, which interviewed farmers’ groups in Uganda, Malawi, Nicaragua, India, Sri Lanka and the Caribbean, reveals that many families are spending up to 80% of their entire household budget on basic food items. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Hurriyet.com.tr: A recent application to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, or CFTC, the regulatory authority that arranges futures contracts in the United States, opens way for individual US investors to trade on futures contracts in Turkey.

Turkey’s derivatives bourse opens to US citizens The path is opening for U.S. investors to put money into the Turkish Derivatives Exchange, or VOB, based in the Aegean city of İzmir. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Commodityonline.com: Except gold, nobody wants to invest in any commodities now. Investors are shying away from commodities now as they badly burnt their fingers after putting their money in commodities like crude, metals and agri goods.

But, is it prudent to dump commodities altogether? That is the question haunting millions of investors across the globe….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Radionz.co.nz: The Chamber of Mines said on Tuesday gold output fell 13.6% to 220,127kg in 2008 - the lowest level since the 218,031kg in 1922. The sector accounts for about 2.5% of gross domestic product in South Africa.

However, it is now the world’s number three producer behind China and the United States….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Bloomberg: Gold fell the most in six weeks as demand ebbed following a rally last week that sent the precious metal above $1,000 an ounce. Silver also declined.

Before sliding today, gold’s seven-day relative-strength index had topped 70 since Feb. 17, a signal that prices may drop in the short term….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From FT: Gold slipped after Ben Bernanke’s testimony to Congress on Tuesday provided comfort to investors on the outlook for inflation and prospects for a recovery in the US financial system.

Gold sank towards the $960 level, falling 3 per cent to $962.50 a troy ounce and trading between a low of $958.75 and a high of $994.80. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From FT: So much attention has been focused on gold prices recently that the performance of the silver market has been somewhat overlooked.

But silver has comfortably outperformed gold, with prices rising 29.2 per cent this year to a high of $14.60 a troy ounce on Monday, while gold’s peak at $1,005.40 was a gain of 14.5 per cent. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From FT: Olivier Jakob at Petromatrix continues his crusade against the United States Oil Fund in his Tuesday note, an issue increasingly being picked up across the commodities and investment spectrum.

Jakob’s specific case is with the distortions being caused in the WTI market on account of the ETF’s size and predictability. He notes people are already rolling positions from the front-month April contract and into May just to avoid the distortions. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From AFP: Oil prices held firm on Tuesday after losses the previous day but gains were capped by lingering demand concerns and sliding equity markets, analysts said.

Brent North Sea crude for April delivery added 30 cents to 41.27 dollars per barrel. New York’s main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in April, was unchanged at 38.44 dollars a barrel….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From AFP: Italy took the first concrete step Tuesday towards returning to nuclear energy following a 21-year ban, reaching an accord with France to build state-of-the-art reactors.

The Italian and French energy firms ENEL and EDF signed an accord for the construction in Italy of at least four European pressurised water nuclear reactors (EPRs) as part of an overall nuclear cooperation accord….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Timesonline.co.uk: The good news is that renewable energy is “no longer an option” and opportunities in the sector will multiply, according to Kristen Herde, the head of human resources at E.ON Climate & Renewables. The bad news is that without vocational experience, seizing those opportunities can be difficult.

Difficult, but not insurmountable. Herde advises that those looking for careers in renewable energy should enhance their employability with internships, get some project management skills and commercial awareness, and learn a second language. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Proactiveinvestors.co.uk: The global carbon market in 2009 will grow by 20 percent over 2008 in terms of volume, predicts Norwegian energy and environmental markets research group Point Carbon.

Point Carbon forecasts that 5.9 billion tonnes (gigatonnes) of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) will trade this year, compared to 4.9 gt in 2008, an increase of 20 percent, according to a recent report called: Carbon Market Analyst: Outlook for 2009….. Full Article: Source

A SQUARE’s report on recent webinar on carbon-led investing - with voice-over (which non-A SQUARE subscribers can purchase individually) can be accessed here:
http://www.opalesque.com/asquare/509/Webinar_Carbon_Led_Investing.html

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From FT: The value of the carbon trading market will drop for the first time this year as reduced industrial activity in the global economic slowdown hits volumes and prices, a research group warned on Tuesday.

The current low prices for carbon dioxide mean that the value of the market is likely to drop by nearly one-third, from €92bn ($117bn) last year to €63bn this year, according to Point Carbon, a market analysis group part-owned by financial and industrial interests….. Full Article: Source

A SQUARE’s report on recent webinar on carbon-led investing - with voice-over (which non-A SQUARE subscribers can purchase individually) can be accessed here:
http://www.opalesque.com/asquare/509/Webinar_Carbon_Led_Investing.html

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Farmonline.com.au: Queensland Liberal Senator, Ian Macdonald, has told a parliamentary hearing in Canberra that he fears Australia will become “a nation of vegetarians” if the emissions trading scheme goes ahead as proposed by the Government.

While Government staff disagreed with Senator Macdonald, he continued to question whether people would be able to afford to buy meat in Australia….. Full Article: Source

A SQUARE’s report on recent webinar on carbon-led investing - with voice-over (which non-A SQUARE subscribers can purchase individually) can be accessed here:
http://www.opalesque.com/asquare/509/Webinar_Carbon_Led_Investing.html

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Forbes: A year ago, they were among the market’s strongest, but steel stocks are suffering and have more room to tumble. The global economic recession has brought about an alarming decline in industrial production during the past several months.

With construction idling, steel producers have been acutely vulnerable to downside risks in the current market environment. Underscoring these risks is the sharp decline in the Market Vectors Steel Index exchange-traded fund….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Commodities-now.com: EU steel production fell 45.9 per cent in January compared to a year earlier, as demand tumbled.

Crude steel output across the 27-nation bloc was 9.55 million tonnes, almost half the 17.65 million tonnes made in January 2008, according to figures from the World Steel Association. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Metalmarkets.org.uk: Most base metals prices were higher Tuesday on gains in US equities markets, which encouraged investors to believe that demand for copper, aluminium and other metals used in industry will rebound.

Three-month aluminium added $45 to $1,333 per tonne in London even though inventories in London Metal Exchange warehouses are up to 3.2 million tonnes, a record as stockpiles have gone up by 36 percent since the beginning of the year….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Theage.com.au: The fall in commodities prices that has sapped stock values and exacerbated the nation economic slowdown, may soon push the Aussie dollar to 58 US cents, according to an analyst.

Commodities prices, measured by the Reuters-Jefferies CRB commodities index, have collapsed 58% since their July 2002 high of 473.5 index points, which was inflated by robust growth estimates and tight supplies….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Goldseek.com: With gold reaching $1,000 an ounce and posting new highs versus all currencies, are there any hard currencies left? Over the past 100 years, we have moved further and further away from the gold standard.

We see no indication for that trend to reverse; if anything, it may accelerate. As a result, we have cautioned long before this credit crisis erupted that there is no such thing as a safe asset anymore; investors may want to take a diversified approach to something as mundane as cash. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Indiatimes.com: Farmers and traders in Gujarat will soon be able to see commodity rates on their cell phones. Tata Teleservices Limited (TTSL) has tied up with Impetus Technologies to launch a unique service Mandi Bhav, through which users can get information about trading platform, weather information and expert advice in rural areas of the country.

“The application will help farmers and commodity traders get daily spot rates of commodities of their interest, which will help them to maximise their profits,” Naveen Bhasin, chief operating officer of TTSL’s Gujarat circle, told TOI on Tuesday….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Guardian: U.S. grain futures slid on Tuesday as the dollar steadied and after Wall Street plumbed 12-year lows on deepening worries over the global financial system.

Traders said the macroeconomic environment was an overriding influence on the direction of the dollar, which in turn drove commodity prices….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Vancouversun.com: Agriculture led gains on Scotiabank’s monthly commodity price index, which ended its five-month losing streak in January on strong buying out of China.

“A big jump in the agriculture index — up 9.5% month over month — led the way in January,” said Patricia Mohr, Scotiabank’s commodities market specialist. Canola prices (the highest value Canadian crop) strengthened significantly in response to buying by China’s State Reserve Bureau….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Bloomberg: Sugar rose, halting a two-session slide, on speculation that the global production shortfall will widen as output declines in India, the world’s largest consumer of the sweetener.

Global demand may exceed output by 11.56 million metric tons in the year ending Sept. 30, up from an earlier estimate of 9.66 million tons, as production in India and China slips below earlier forecasts, analyst and broker Kingsman SA of Lausanne, Switzerland, said. …. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Guardian: U.S. grain futures fell on Tuesday, dragged down by lower share markets as concerns grew about the global economy and the banking sector.

Wall Street slumped to a 12-year low on Monday, and European stocks followed on Tuesday, as investors worried that the U.S. government would not be able to stablise the financial system, dragging down commodities across the board….. Full Article: Source

Posted on 25 February 2009 by VRS |  Email |Print

From Bloomberg: Cotton fell to a three-month low on mounting concern that the slumping global economy will erode demand for raw materials, including fiber used to make textiles and clothing.

Confidence among U.S. consumers plunged to a record in February, signaling spending will slump further as unemployment soars….. Full Article: Source

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