Feb. 3, 2015, 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
Jan. 28, 2015, 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
Jan. 26, 2015, 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
Jan. 23, 2015, 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
Jan. 23, 2015, 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
Jan. 14, 2015, 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
Apr. 29, 2014, 7:15 PM
- U.S. government forecasters predict a more than 65% chance for an El Niño weather phenomenon by the end of the year, a development that threatens to drive up prices for food and other staples.
- El Niño has a reputation for triggering sharp run-ups for prices in markets as diverse as nickel, coffee and soybeans, and commodities investors, traders and analysts are bracing for impact at a time when global supplies of many raw materials already are stretched.
- Global food prices - which at the start of 2014 were expected to be largely flat this year - could easily climb 15% to record highs in as a little as three months after an El Niño occurs, says World Bank economist James Baffes.
- But Société Générale analysts say it is miners, not farmers, who have the most to worry about; since 1991, nickel prices rose the most (13.9%) during El Niño years among commodities the bank tracks.
- ETFs: DBA, CORN, DBC, JO, JJC, RJA, JJG, WEAT, SOYB, DJP, SGG, DBB, COW, NIB, GSG, RJI, CAFE, BAL, GCC, DAG, USCI, JJA, GRU, CHOC, CANE, JJN, RGRA, AGA, JJT, RGRC, CPER, AGF, GSP, BOM, RJZ, JJU, GSC, LSC, FUD, DJCI, USAG, BOS, SGAR, JJM, DEE, BDD, UCI, LD, WEET, UAG, DYY, DIRT, BCM, CMD, DDP, NINI, JJS, CTNN, TAGS, UBC, CUPM, FOIL, UCD, ADZ, RGRI, LEDD, UBM, CMDT, BDG, SBV, USMI, DPU, LSTK, CSCB, GRWN, HEVY, CSCR
Apr. 3, 2014, 2:40 AM
- A 7.8 magnitude earthquake has struck northern Chile just a day after one of 8.2.
- However, although Tsunami warnings were issued on the coast, they have now been cancelled, and there were no initial reports of casualties or serious damage from the second quake.
- Glencore Xstrata's (GLCNF, GLNCY) and Anglo American's (AAUKF, AAUKY) Collahausi mine said it is continuing the "process of normalization" without problems following an evacuation of workers because of Tuesday's quake.
- Teck Resources (TCK) and Southern Copper (SCCO) also have mining operations in Chile; the latter's were continuing normally following the first quake.
- ETFs: JJC, CPER, CUPM
Apr. 2, 2014, 3:19 PM
- Normal operations are expected to resume by day's end at Anglo American (AAUKF, AAUKY) and Glencore's (GLCNF, GLNCY) Collahuasi copper mine in Chile after a major earthquake forced a production shutdown.
- Collahuasi produced 445K metric tons of copper content last year and accounts for nearly 6% of Chile's overall output.
- The rest of Anglo American's operations in Chile, mostly located further south, weren't affected by the earthquake.
- Southern Copper (SCCO) said last night its mining operations in the country continued normally.
- ETFs: JJC, CPER, CUPM
Mar. 20, 2014, 8:00 AM
- Metals continue to lead the way down in commodities following the FOMC results and Yellen press conference. Unless something happens to change the Fed's mind, QE will end this fall and rate hikes are starting about one year from today.
- Gold -1.4% to $1,322 per ounce - as recently as Monday, the metal was challenging $1,400. Silver -2.6% to $20.28. Copper -2.2% to $2.92 per pound. Platinum -1% to $1,437 per ounce. Palladium -2.1% to $752. WTI crude oil slips another 0.4% to $98.76.
- Gold's retreat over the last couple of sessions has wiped out all of March's gain.
- ETFs: GLD, SLV, AGQ, IAU, PHYS, SIVR, USLV, PPLT, PALL, ZSL, SGOL, UGL, DGP, GLL, DZZ, UGLD, DSLV, DGL, DBS, GLDI, GLTR, PTM, DGZ, SLVO, AGOL, DGLD, DBP, WITE, PGM, TBAR, USV, UBG, JJP, GLDE, GYEN, RGRP, GEUR, GGBP, BLNG, JJC, CPER, CUPM
Mar. 19, 2014, 8:08 AM
- China's copper consumption will grow for more than a decade as demand from the world's top user of the metal remains robust despite fears of an economic slowdown, a top executive at Freeport McMoRan (FCX) says.
- Worries over slower growth in China, which accounts for 40% of global copper consumption, helped send prices to a 44-month low last week, down 12% YTD.
- China's import volumes should remain brisk even if its GDP expansion slows to 3%-4%, while a recovery in the U.S. and European economies also should support copper consumption, FCX believes.
- 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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