Tue, Jul. 7, 10:23 AM
- Freeport McMoRan (FCX -7.3%) is the S&P 500's worst performer in early trading as copper prices retreat to five-month lows.
- Other global miners of copper, iron ore and other metals also are posting sharp losses: VALE -6.1%, BHP -3.8%, RIO -3.9%, SCCO -4.4%, TCK -6.4%.
- China’s stock market swoon is magnifying investor fears about weaker demand from one of the world’s largest consumers of raw materials.
- Overnight, the S&P, Goldman Sachs and the Bloomberg commodity indexes fell the most since November, and analysts say the worst is yet to come.
- "China's demand stumble comes at an awkward time, just when more and more supply of raw materials is coming on stream in many sectors. No quick fix in sight," says HSBC co-head of Asian economic research Frederic Neumann.
- ETFs: JJC, CPER, CUPM
Mon, Jul. 6, 3:58 PM
- Copper prices finished at five-month lows, -3.5% to $2.538/lb., on growing concerns that China’s demand for the industrial metal may continue to falter after a series of stimulus measures taken in the last several months has failed to make a dent in the country’s slowdown.
- "Copper is telling you that there are serious problems in China,” says George Gero, a managing director at RBC Capital.
- Also hurting copper was today's slide in crude oil; big drops in the oil price tend to weigh on copper, as many funds trade the two commodities in a single basket, with a heavier share devoted to oil.
- ETFs: JJC, CPER, CUPM
Mon, Jul. 6, 9:13 AM
- Nymex crude oil futures for August delivery tumble $2.40 (-4.2%) to $54.46/bbl, while ICE Brent crude slides $1.31 (-2.5%) to $58.81/bbl, after Greece overwhelmingly voted against creditors’ conditions for further bailout aid, adding to uncertainty around the country’s eurozone membership.
- "All three possible Greek-related factors - higher risk aversion, a stronger dollar, and a slowdown in the European economy - would be bearish for oil prices,” says Michael Wittner, head of oil research at Société Générale.
- Oil prices also are being pressured by the Iranian nuclear talks expected to conclude this week, which could see heightened Iranian crude exports soon if sanctions are lifted, and Friday's sharp fall in oil prices following the U.S.’s unexpectedly high oil inventory figures and bearish drilling rig count last week.
- The three-week selloff in China’s stock market also has rattled confidence in commodities markets; copper, often watched as a barometer for the broader global economy, -3.6% at $2.539/lb.
- ETFs: USO, OIL, UCO, UWTI, SCO, BNO, DBO, DWTI, JJC, DTO, USL, DNO, OLO, SZO, CPER, TWTI, OLEM, CUPM
Tue, May 5, 5:24 PM
- Copper prices have risen to a 2015 high and their highest levels since November, as global demand is seen driving prices.
- A series of stimulus programs from China in recent months has helped convince investors that the world’s largest copper consumer is serious about steadying its economic slowdown; at the same time, disruptions in copper mining and supplies have sparked a belief that the market may end the year with global production and demand nearly balanced, rather than with a supply surplus.
- Glencore (OTCPK:GLCNF, ]]GLNCY]]), the world's no. 3 copper miner, reported its Q1 copper production fell 9% Y/Y, partly due to a planned shutdown for maintenance at its Collahuasi mine in Chile; disruptions at operations owned by BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) and Freeport McMoRan (NYSE:FCX) also have fueled speculation that a global surplus will shrink this year.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, CPER, BOM, RJZ, BOS, BDD, JJM, CUPM
Fri, Mar. 13, 11:01 AM
- The key force in the recent bounce in commodity markets, says Goldman Sachs, has been retailers pouring money into oil ETFs even as commodity fundamentals remain weak, especially as compared with the outlook for stocks.
- "We believe that these inflows are generating selling opportunities in oil and copper precisely because they are at odds with commodity market fundamentals," says Goldman, noting the rapid recent fall in rig count is being offset by rising rig productivity, the backlog of wells, and the possibility of high-grading in the near future.
- "Dissecting commodity sell-offs suggests that later is better," says the team, noting it can take months before consumption fully adjusts to lower prices (i.e., rising enough to offset the inventory build).
- ETFs: USO, XLE, OIL, UCO, ERX, VDE, OIH, SCO, ERY, DIG, JJC, BNO, UGA, DTO, DBO, DUG, IYE, UWTI, USL, FENY, DWTI, PXJ, UHN, DNO, RYE, SZO, FXN, CPER, OLO, DDG, CUPM, TWTI, OLEM
Tue, Feb. 3, 10:24 AM
- Copper prices are on track for their biggest gains since September on speculation that China would use stimulus measures to jump-start its economy and boost demand for the metal.
- Rising oil prices and Chinese stimulus speculation “have changed the focus to the upside and the short-covering has done the rest,” says Saxo Bank's Ole Hansen, adding that “energy is such a big and important part of the commodity sector, and the somewhat improved sentiment there also helps other” raw materials; aluminum and nickel also are rising to multi-week highs.
- "We’re in this perverse world where bad news is good news,” says BNP Paribas analyst Stephen Briggs, and "a lot of people are thinking China’s going to join the rest of the world and lower interest rates or [offer] some kind of monetary response."
- Raw materials companies are off to a strong start today: FCX +5.8%, BHP +3.9%, RIO +2.4%, VALE +3.9%, SCCO +3.4%.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, JJN, JJU, JJT, CPER, BOM, RJZ, BOS, LD, BDD, JJM, FOIL, NINI, CUPM
Wed, Jan. 28, 2:57 PM
- “Despite the large declines in commodity prices, we see risks as still skewed to the downside over the near-term,” says Goldman Sachs.
- Of course, much of the price decline has to do with oil, and Goldman doesn't expect a whole lot more damage as prices have gotten low enough for investors to begin buying excess supplies and putting them in storage. While this may put a floor under the price, says Goldman, it also means prices are likely to stay lower for longer.
- Meanwhile, there's China, and slowing growth there means copper (NYSEARCA:JJC) prices have further to fall. Some metals to consider going long? Palladium (NYSEARCA:PALL), nickel (JJN, NINI), and zinc.
- ETFs: DJP, GSG, RJI, GSC, GSP, DJCI, CMD, UCD
Mon, Jan. 26, 11:49 AM
- J.P. Morgan cuts its 2015 aluminum and copper forecasts by ~10%, seeing rising production in China this year while demand remains lukewarm, and downgrades Chalco (ACH -1.7%) to Sell from Neutral.
- ACH has been one of the best performing stocks in China’s metals sector, but JPM says the underlying issue remains the company’s high-cost, loss-making assets within an oversupplied aluminum sector.
- With ACH's high debt and negative free cash flow, the firm also believes the likelihood of an equity raising has increased.
- Copper prices are bumping along at five-year lows, reflecting a worsening outlook for the global economy.
- ETFs: JJC, CPER, CUPM
Fri, Jan. 23, 4:56 PM
- Copper prices extended their rout today, with the Comex March contract tumbling 3% to just above $2.50/lb. and the lowest close since July 2009.
- Much of copper’s recent slide has been ascribed to a worsening outlook for the global economy, and the dollar's push to an 11-year high against the euro following the ECB's plans for a major bond-buying program exacerbated the move today.
- Copper’s decline also reflects falling production costs, and a Goldman Sachs report today said further losses are on the way.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, CPER, BOM, RJZ, BOS, BDD, JJM, CUPM, RGRI, UBM, BDG, USMI, HEVY
Fri, Jan. 23, 8:21 AM
- "The primary reason for the changes to our forecasts is cost deflation," says the team, noting "actual and anticipated U.S. dollar strength, cheaper energy and other input costs and our expectation of an improvement in mining productivity."
- The bank cut its expectations for metals and mined raw materials over the next three years by between 10 and 20 percent.
- Bearish on copper (NYSEARCA:JJC) even after a 20% decline over the last year, Goldman cuts its forecast for this year to $5,542 per metric ton from $6,400.
- Facing a sustained period of oversupply, iron ore is now seen averaging $66 per ton vs. $80 previously. Gold's forecast is trimmed to $1,089 per ounce from $1,200.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, JJN, JJU, JJT, CPER, BOM, RJZ, BOS, LD, BDD, JJM, FOIL, NINI, CUPM, RGRI, LEDD, UBM, BDG, USMI, HEVY
Wed, Jan. 14, 10:28 AM
- Freeport McMoRan (FCX -10.8%) sinks to a 52-week low as copper prices fall 4.5% to collapse to 2009 levels, though it is off overnight lows after prices were down nearly 9% at one point in London.
- Other big global miners also are sharply lower: SCCO -7.3%, RIO -2.5%, BHP -4.4%, VALE -3.8%, CLF -5.8%.
- Concerns over a supply glut and slowing consumption in China have weighed on copper prices in recent months; copper is often seen as an omen for the global economy because it is used in a wide array of construction and manufacturing activities, so today's precipitous drop explains much of the weakness in global equity markets.
- The iPath Dow Jones UBS Copper Subindex Total Return ETN (NYSEARCA:JJC) is trading so heavily that nearly 60% of the average full-day volume traded in the first 10 minutes this morning.
- ETFs: CPER, CUPM, DBB, BOM, RJZ, BOS, BDD, JJM, RGRI, UBM, BDG, USMI, HEVY
Dec. 15, 2014, 1:55 AM
- Rio Tinto (NYSE:RIO) and BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) are looking to replicate their iron ore strategy in the copper business, squeezing out high-cost producers by injecting more of the red metal into an oversupplied market.
- Separately and in joint ventures, Rio and BHP intend to mine millions of additional tonnes of copper, confident in the coming years that copper will be in short supply.
- Copper producers: OTCPK:GLNCY, FCX, TCK, SCCO
- ETFs: JJC, COPX, CU, CPER, CUPM
Sep. 30, 2014, 12:07 PM
- The early decline in WTI crude oil has accelerated sharply over the past few minutes, and it's now off 3.5% to $91.25 per barrel, about inline with the lowest pricing seen this year. USO -2.9%
- Moving alongside is heating oil (UHN -1.1%) and gasoline (UGA -3.1%).
- Broad energy ETFs: DBE, RJN, JJE, ONG, RGRE, UBN
- Checking other commodities: Silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) is down 3.4%, Copper (NYSEARCA:JJC) is lower by 1.3%, and Wheat (NYSEARCA:WEAT) is off 1.8%.
- Broad commodity ETFs: DBC, DJP, GSG, RJI, GCC, USCI, GSC, GSP, RGRC, DJCI, LSC, FTGC, DEE, UCI, DYY, CMD, BCM, DDP, UCD, CMDT, SBV, DPU, CSCB, CSCR
Sep. 22, 2014, 2:58 PM
- Commodity prices as measured by the Total Return Bloomberg Commodities Index reaches new five-year lows, hit by a strengthening dollar, the prospect of a record grain harvest in the U.S. and concerns over weakening economic growth in China.
- The index has dropped more than 12% since the end of June amid falling prices for commodities such as crude oil, soybeans and gold.
- Even industrial metals, one of this year’s best performers in commodities, have started to come under pressure; nickel has dropped 10% since the end of June, copper prices are at three-month lows, and iron ore trades below $80/ton for the first time since 2009.
- ETFs: USO, AGQ, OIL, DBA, CORN, USLV, UCO, ZSL, UGL, SCO, DGP, GLL, JJC, RJA, JJG, UGLD, BNO, WEAT, DZZ, DTO, SOYB, DBO, DSLV, DGL, CRUD, DBS, DAG, DGZ, JJA, DGLD, USL, GRU, DBE, UWTI, JJN, DNO, DWTI, RJN, USV, RGRA, AGA, UBG, AGF, CPER, SZO, BAR, FUD, USAG, OLO, UAG, WEET, DIRT, JJE, BARS, TAGS, NINI, CUPM, ONG, RGRE, ADZ, OLEM, UBN
Aug. 11, 2014, 6:58 AM
- Indonesian officials say there are no plans to withdraw the seven-month old ban on exports of unprocessed nickel ore and bauxite.
- The country was the world's top exporter of nickel ore and a major bauxite producer until this past January, when the ban was issued in order to force miners to build smelters.
- Last month, the government allowed several firms producing partially processed minerals such as copper concentrate to resume exports, although Indonesia's chief economic minister Chairul Tanjung says the same rationale does not apply to unprocessed exports of nickel ore and bauxite.
- "Nickel is different because if you are smelting in Indonesia the added value is much higher than copper," says Tanjung. "Because of that it's a separate issue."
- ETFs: IDX, JJC, EIDO, COPX, CU, IDXJ, JJN, CPER, NINI, CUPM
Jun. 4, 2014, 3:13 PM
- Foreign copper miners in Indonesia have agreed in principle to pay an export tax, the country's deputy finance minister says, following talks aimed at restarting concentrate exports after a five-month halt.
- Freeport-McMoRan (FCX +1.5%) and Newmont Mining (NEM +0.4%), which together account for 97% of Indonesia's copper output, had argued they should be exempt from the tax as introduced in January, which kicks in at 25% and rises to 60% in 2016 before a total concentrate export ban in 2017.
- FCX CFO Kathleen Quirk tells an investor conference in Chicago today that the company expects to resume exports very soon and the export tax would be "significantly reduced."
- Copper for July delivery, the most actively traded contract, suffers its biggest one-day drop since April as a resolution nears; also there are concerns that a probe of metals warehousing at a Chinese port could hurt demand if China clamps down on copper-based financing.
- ETFs; JJC, CPER, CUPM
The Dow Jones-UBS Copper Subindex Total ReturnService Mark is a sub-index of the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Total ReturnService Mark and reflects the returns that are potentially available through an unleveraged investment in the futures contracts on physical commodities comprising the index plus the rate of interest that could be earned on cash collateral invested in specified Treasury Bills. The index includes the contract in the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Total ReturnService Mark that relates to a single commodity, copper (currently the Copper High Grade futures contract traded on the COMEX).
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