Lead paints a dark picture

Posted: December 19th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: China, Commodities, Currencies, Lead, Metals, US Dollar, USA | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

Lead paints a dark pictureLead for delivery in three months slid 2.2 percent to $1,878 a metric ton by 1:26 p.m. Wednesday on the London Metal Exchange. It reached the lowest price since August 2012. The metal, also used in radiation shielding, fell 15 percent this year and is the worst-performing metal on the LME.

Lead prices dropped to a 28-month low on concern that demand will ebb in China, the world’s largest consumer, while some industrial metals fell on concern that the Federal Reserve is moving closer to boosting interest rates.

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Europe styrene bids down 17% in one day

Posted: December 18th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Europe, Styrene | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Europe styrene bids down 17% in one dayOn Tuesday evening, December styrene bids hit $890/tonne FOB Rotterdam, with talk of a deal done at this level, although this could not be immediately confirmed. This is the lowest bid level since 4 June 2009 when they were at $880/tonne FOB Rotterdam.

The unprecedented falls were driven by plunging crude, benzene and naphtha values and weak demand. This weak demand approaching the year end, when players traditionally destock to lower working capital on balance sheets, coupled with buyer uncertainty over where the floor is for upstream prices has also placed downward pressure on styrene prices.

Via ICIS Reports That Europe Styrene Bids See Record Daily Fall, Down 17% – ICIS

Why is the rouble in trouble?

Posted: December 16th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Currencies, Rouble, Russia, Ukraine, USA | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Why is the rouble in trouble?The rouble smashed through resistance to an all-time low of 65.5 to the dollar, falling a jaw-dropping 11%, in a crescendo of selling on Monday, as oil prices continued to slide and markets braced for a likely default in Ukraine.

The Russian currency has lost half its value since President Vladimir Putin first sent forces into Ukraine, setting off a chain of events that the Kremlin can no longer control.

In the bleakest official forecast yet from Moscow, the Russian central bank warned that the country could see a 4.5 per cent to 4.7 per cent contraction in GDP next year if oil prices remained at $60 a barrel.

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Sustainable Procurement – Supplier charter

Posted: December 15th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: CSR in purchasing, Gem | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Sustainable procurement
One way of integrating sustainable procurement into your supply chain is to start a the very beginning and put a ‘supplier charter‘ in place.

Set out your companies CSR priorities, send these to your suppliers along with a questionnaire asking them to evaluate how they perform against each of the priorities. Once you start collecting information and forming a constructive dialogue with your suppliers, it becomes possible to implement your CSR objectives through your supply chain.

How to implement a supplier charter

US spot ethylene at 30-month low

Posted: December 13th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Commodities, Energy, ethylene, USA | Tags: , , | No Comments »

US spot ethylene at 30-month lowFront-month December material traded at 41.750 cents/lb ($920/tonne), its lowest since a trade at 41.625 cents/lb during the week ended 22 June 2012. Spot ethylene prices have fallen more than 30 cents/lb since peaking in September, tracking improved supply, softer demand and plunging global energy markets, as global energy values have fallen enough to make overseas derivatives more competitive.

Sources said it remains unclear where the floor for ethylene is, but said prices have not fallen as much as global energy values, so downward movement remains possible.

Via US spot ethylene closes week at 30-month low on improved supply – ICIS

Iron ore: Apocalypse now?

Posted: December 12th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Australia, Canada, China, Commodities, Iron ore, Metals, South Africa, Steel | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Iron ore: Apocalypse now?Scandinavian iron ore miner Northland Resources SE has filed for bankruptcy with more than $650 million in debt. Kumba, whose Sishen mine in South Africa is the continent’s largest iron ore operation, will reduce stay-in-business capital expenditure 20 percent and a further 10 percent in 2015 and 2016.

Canada iron ore miner Alderon to cut jobs, defer payments to save cash. 90 per cent of iron ore mines in Shandong province have production costs higher than the current market price for iron ore, sparking fear of wides-spread closures. Australia‘s Atlas Iron and Mt Gibson Iron on Friday were forced to lay off workers and introduce austerity measures in an attempt to ride out a sharp slide in iron ore prices.

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America is kicking its oil habit

Posted: December 11th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Commodities, Energy, Oil, USA | Tags: , , | No Comments »

America is kicking its oil habitIt is a great success story that we are now producing oil in the quantity that we are,” U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew said in an interview in New York. “The independence that we’ve developed in the energy sector, it is a clear positive if you look at the impact on our economy.”

As the U.S. moves closer and closer to energy independence, greater fuel efficiency, changing demographics and an increase in renewables are altering the dynamic that in the past would have seen demand for gasoline climbing. Gross domestic product grew at a 2.4 percent pace in the third quarter from the year-earlier period. Oil consumption fell 0.3 percent, government data show.

Via How America Is Kicking Its Oil Habit – Bloomberg

The Multiplier Effect

Posted: December 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Best practices, Gem, Greening the Supply Chain, Negotiating with Suppliers, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

multiplier effectIf you want to really use your buying power to make a environmental difference, make sure that any “green” criteria for vendor selection are widely publicized so that your suppliers’ competitors hear about them too.
In this way, encouraging a change in one supplier can have a “multiplier effect” on many others.

via Negotiating Nugget | Propurchaser.

Cotton: governments step in

Posted: December 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Agricultural, China, Commodities, Cotton, India, USA | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

Cotton: governments step inFaced with falling cotton prices, governments triggered mechanisms to support their farmers. This is the case in India, which has a record production for the second consecutive year – it should even become the world’s largest producer, overtaking China

Plentiful global supplies, thanks to favorable weather and market distortions caused by a large-scale Chinese support program for its growers, have driven prices below 60 cents a pound this year — the lowest levels since 2009 — hitting farmers around the world. And with China, the world’s largest importer, dictating the market to farmers in rich and poor countries alike, “we are more or less price takers”, says Evelyn Nguleka, head of South Africa farmers union.

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Oil: Falling Down

Posted: December 9th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: China, Energy, Europe, Oil, Russia, Saudi Arabia, USA | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

Oil falling downBrent for January settlement declined $2.88 to $66.19 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, the lowest since Sept. 29, 2009. The volume of all futures was 4.9 percent below the 100-day average. WTI for January delivery dropped $2.79 to end at $63.05 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement since July 16, 2009. Volume was 13 percent above the 100-day average.

Oil was selling at $105 a barrel as recently as July, but the price has been falling ever since. Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia blocked calls from poorer members of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to reduce production at the group’s meeting on November 27, fueling a further slide in oil prices which have lost more than 40 per cent since June.

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