Posted: May 21st, 2013 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: Commodities, Gold, Metals, Precious metals, Silver | Tags: Gold, gold future, gold price, silver, silver future, silver price | No Comments »
Gold and silver futures got off to another rocky start to begin the trading week. Silver fell as low as $20.84 a troy ounce, the lowest since September 2010, later rebounding to close 3 per cent higher at $22.91 in New York trading.
The price of silver was the standout mover in financial markets Monday as it took a hammering for the second trading session in a row, even as stocks remained relatively solid amid hopes over the U.S. economy. Silver’s stumble also brought down the price of gold; the yellow metal hit a one-month low of $1,338.10 an ounce and extended its slump for an eighth straight day. Gold has fallen more than 7% in May.
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Posted: May 19th, 2013 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: Currencies, US Dollar | Tags: currency, dollar, dollar index, dollar price | No Comments »
The US dollar soared against major currencies on Friday on growing speculation that the Federal Reserve could soon begin to rein in its bond-buying program and after data showed US consumer sentiment hit a 6-year high in early May.
The US Dollar Index is very strong right now: at its highest value since July 2010, closing at 84.24 on Friday.
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Posted: May 18th, 2013 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: Commodities, Copper, Metals | Tags: Copper, copper demand, copper future, copper price, metal, metal future | No Comments »
Copper is currently on the rebound, on the back of its third bearish cycle from February to April. Shanghai Cifco Futures Co. expects prices to climb until the end of June before pulling back to $6,037.50 per tonne by September.
Copper prices are up slightly in London, after inventories dropped to a seven-month low in China, the world’s biggest consumer of industrial metal, while U.S. consumer confidence rose to the highest since 2007. Three-month copper climbed 1.1 percent on Thursday to sit at $7,279 per tonne. Copper was seeing resistance at the $7.240 per tonne, but the day’s climb seems to have broken that barrier. Over in New York, copper futures were behaving much the same. Copper for July was up 0.9 percent at $3.2945 a pound.
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Posted: May 16th, 2013 | Author: Rod Sherkin | Filed under: China, Steel | Tags: china steel, steel, steel glut, steel output, steel price, steel production | No Comments »
A surge in Chinese steel production and a flood of exports are pressuring world-wide steel prices despite Beijing’s efforts to rein in the steel industry, in the latest example of the global impact of China‘s massive industrial overcapacity.
Global steel prices have fallen 3.5% since February to an average of $710 a ton, according to MEPS steel consultancy. While China hasn’t been shipping much more directly to the U.S., much of its material is destined for the world’s largest economy via trans-shipments through Japan, South Korea, Singapore or Malaysia.
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Posted: April 16th, 2013 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: China, Commodities, Gold, Metals, Precious metals | Tags: Gold, gold inventory, gold price, gold reserve, precious metal | 3 Comments »
Last friday, commodities tumbled on US retail sales news, led by metals and precious metals. But yesterday, gold plunged to $1,357 after disappointing news on China first quarter growth over the week-end.
The 7.7 percent increase in first-quarter Chinese gross domestic product from a year earlier marked the first time in data going back two decades that four periods in a row have seen growth of less than 8 percent. The figure released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China was also the worst miss of analyst estimates since the third quarter of 2008. Consequently, gold dropped below the threshold of $1,400 an ounce, after falling under $1,500 last week, its lowest level in two years.
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Posted: April 9th, 2013 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: Electricity, Energy, Natural Gas, Shale gas | Tags: japan, japan LNG, LNG, LNG futures, LNG market | No Comments »
Japan, the world’s biggest importer of LNG, pays about $18 per British thermal units, versus$10 in Europe and $3~4 in the U.S. It is tired of paying such a price for a resource that has become so important. So Japan is preparing to launch the first LNG futures market.
The low price in the U.S. is due to the shale gas boom in the country and to the fact that the gas does not need to be liquefied. In Europe, there are spot markets for LNG which constantly take into account the state of supply and demand.
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Posted: January 19th, 2013 | Author: Rod Sherkin | Filed under: Gem, Labor | Tags: labor, reshoring, usa | 1 Comment »
Reshoring Gives Economic Hope to Manufacturers
Offshore outsourcing has become one of the hot button political issues of the day. Especially in light of the U.S. economic downturn, there is a desperate need for more jobs for American workers, while at the same time companies are looking for ways to save money to keep themselves afloat. But now it looks as though reshoring might be an idea that makes sense for both sides, making reshoring a trend that just might stick.
The OffShore Outsourcing Controversy
Off-shoring in the manufacturing, customer service, and tech industries has been happening for some time now and opponents feel there are far more negatives than positives to offshore outsourcing (delays, hidden costs, quality control), while others see nothing but an effective strategy for keeping costs down.
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Posted: November 28th, 2012 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: Metals | Tags: australia, canada, nickel, nickel price, nickel production | No Comments »
The International Nickel Study Group predicts an increase in the supply of nickel next year leading to a surplus of 70,000 tonnes. Several projects are either already planned or going live shortly.
This is the case with Koniambo in New Caledonia which will start commercial production at the beginning of January, or the refinery project between Taganito Mitsui & Co and Sumitomo Metal Mining in the Philippines, despite a Japanese nickel market with an excess of 15,000 tons over three quarters.
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Posted: November 23rd, 2012 | Author: Pascal Blanc | Filed under: China, Commodities, Metals, Rare Earths | Tags: china, rare earth, rare earth price, rare earth production, rare earth supply | No Comments »
The Chinese government continues to restructure and modernize its rare-earths industry. In a move that Beijing describes as “promoting orderly development”, it will provide direct subsidies to revive struggling rare-earths producers – a tacit acknowledgment of the strategic importance of the industry.
We mentioned in a previous article that prices of rare-earths minerals were succumbing to gravity. The explosion of the bubble, which saw the price of rare earths to increase six-fold between June 2010 and June 2011, has reduced prices to such a level that the two major Chinese producers have decided to temporarily stop their activity. Soaring prices led new projects and also motivated consuming industries to find alternatives. While consumer countries denounced China before the WTO for reducing its export quotas, Chinese sales of rare earths have fallen 30% in 2012 to 11 000 tonnes.
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Posted: October 17th, 2012 | Author: Rod Sherkin | Filed under: Electricity, Steel | Tags: electrical steel coil, grain-oriented electrical steel coil, steel coil | No Comments »
According to MetalMiner IndX℠ data, grain-oriented electrical steel coil prices and electrical steel coil surcharges per metric ton have both been consistently declining over the past half-year, and the GOES coil price per ton as of September 2012 is the lowest it’s been since June 2006.
David Hartquist, an international trade lawyer and a partner at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP who represents SSINA, cited a large percentage increase for grain-oriented electrical steel so far this year.
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