Yesterday, 7:49 AM
- Glencore's (OTCPK:GLCNF, OTCPK:GLNCY) planned cuts to its zinc production sends zinc prices soaring 9% overnight and bringing other base metals including copper along for the ride.
- The move is good news for Glencore's stock price too, with shares up more than 11% in London and more than doubling since reaching a record low last week.
- Glencore's reduced operations in Australia, Kazakhstan and South America will reduce global zinc supply by 500K metric tons/year, not a trivial amount in a 14.5M tons/year global market.
- Zinc has, along with nearly all commodities, been under pressure from oversupply, sliding to a five-year low of $1,601.50/ton on Sept. 28.
- Further destocking of zinc and a more visible recovery in China’s industrial activities will be needed to propel a more sustained price rally, says Xiao Fu, head of commodity markets strategy at BOCI Global Commodities.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, JJN, JJU, CPER, JJT, BOM, RJZ, BOS, FOIL, JJM, LD, BDD, NINI, CUPM, LEDD, UBM, BDG, HEVY
Wed, Sep. 9, 11:19 AM
- Industrial metals continue their recent climb, with aluminum, zinc and lead trying to play catch-up with copper, which has gained 5% this week as more miners mothball operations at loss-making mines.
- Glencore's (OTCPK:GLNCY, OTCPK:GLCNF) Monday announcement that it will cut 400K metric tons of copper production over the next 18 months at two mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia comes in the wake of closures or cutbacks at mines controlled by Freeport McMoRan (FCX +4.3%) and others; shortly after Glencore’s decision, the Chinese operator of the Baluba mine in Zambia said it was suspending operations and cutting jobs.
- The closures follow a high level of production outages across the copper industry this year because of bad weather and labor disputes, with the combined effect helping to tighten the difference between supply and demand.
- ETFs: JJC, DBB, JJN, JJU, CPER, JJT, BOM, RJZ, BOS, FOIL, JJM, LD, BDD, NINI, CUPM, LEDD
Tue, Aug. 11, 11:35 AM
- Commodity metals are getting hammered by China's devaluation, with aluminum trading down nearly 2%, copper prices lower by 2.5% and nickel plunging more than 3.5%.
- Hardest hit of the mining stocks is Freeport McMoRan (FCX -14.1%), which has completely surrendered yesterday's 10.8% surge; shares now are down 72% over the past year and 57% YTD.
- Iron ore miners are sharply lower: BHP -5.5%, RIO -4.2%, VALE -7.8%, CLF -7.3%.
- Steel companies: X -9.7%, MT -5.1%, AKS -5.7%, NUE -2.9%, STLD -3.5%, CMC -4%.
- Also: AA -6%, CENX -4.9%, TCK -8.2%, SCCO -4.9%.
- ETFs: XLB, JJC, XME, SLX, PEO, VAW, COPX, DBB, UYM, CU, IYM, JJN, SMN, JJU, PICK, MATL, CPER, JJT, BOM, RJZ, FXZ, PYZ, BOS, FOIL, JJM, LD, BDD
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
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
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
Dec. 27, 2013, 4:29 AM
- The WSJ shines a light onto "shadow warehouses," a hidden system of facilities that store tens of millions of tons of aluminum, copper, nickel and zinc across the globe for banks, hedge funds and commodity merchants.
- The warehouses operate outside the London Metal Exchange's system, are unregulated, and don't provide details of their holdings. As a result, it's unclear how much metal is held in the shadow system. This lack of visibility could cause major price swings.
- The WSJ article follows allegations that warehousing companies have artificially boosted the price of metals, particularly aluminum.
- Companies that operate metals warehouses include Goldman Sachs (GS), Glencore Xstrata (GLCNF) and JPMorgan (JPM), although the latter is looking to sell its commodities unit.
- Relevant tickers include VALE, AA, AWC, KALU, MNSF, CENX, NOR, BHP, RIO, ACH.
- ETFs: DBC, JJC, DBB, DJP, GSG, RJI, GCC, USCI, CFD, JJN, JJT, BOM, RGRC, CPER, CTF, RJZ, GSC, LSC, GSP, JJU, DEE, BDD, BOS, JJM, DYY, DDP, DJCI, LD, CMD, BCM, CUPM, UCI, RGRI, UCD, UBM, FOIL, BDG, LEDD, CMDT, SBV, USMI, DPU, NINI, FTGC, CSCB, CSCR, HEVY
Jun. 4, 2013, 9:41 AMThe FDA grants a priority review designation to Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) and AstraZeneca (AZN) for their metreleptin treatment for disorders associated with lipodystrophy (LD), a very rare disease in which sufferers experience a loss of fat tissue in important areas, especially under the skin. The fat instead accumulates where it shouldn't, such as in muscles and the liver, and can cause severe insulin resistance, diabetes and high levels of triglycerides. (PR) | Jun. 4, 2013, 9:41 AM | Comment!
Jun. 3, 2013, 8:05 AMBeijing returns to metals. Maybe taking advantage of tumbling prices, or maybe showing confidence about the future, China's State Reserves Bureau has purchased base metals on the international market for the first time since the global financial crisis. The agency bought about 30K tons of nickel (JJN) - about one-sixth of LME stockpiles - according to sources, and has been making inquiries about copper (JJC). Other ETFs of note: LD, JJT. | Jun. 3, 2013, 8:05 AM | 3 Comments
Jan. 1, 2013, 12:40 PM
Nov. 16, 2012, 9:32 AMIndustrial metals prices are set to rally into the middle of 2013, says Westpac's Justin Smirk, who has the hottest hand in forecasting of late. He's keeping it simple: Easy money in the U.S. and Europe will combine with a rebounding Chinese economy. Copper, zinc, nickel, and aluminum are all headed higher. | Nov. 16, 2012, 9:32 AM | Comment!
Aug. 27, 2012, 7:21 AMA lot has been written about growing inventories of seemingly everything in China, but stocks of lead there have fallen to the lowest level in over 2 years thanks to demand from battery makers. Nevertheless, the price of lead is off 21% Y/Y, roughly in line with declines for the other base metals. | Aug. 27, 2012, 7:21 AM | 2 Comments
Feb. 1, 2012, 3:42 PMIndustrial metals enjoyed January's risk rally, with the basket of futures trading on the LME rising 10.9%, led by tin (JJT), up 26.5%. Looking to sink below $3/lb. 3-4 months ago, copper (JJC) has rallied all the way back to $3.84, and resurfaced bullish talk that there's just not enough of the metal being mined. | Feb. 1, 2012, 3:42 PM | 1 Comment
Sep. 23, 2011, 1:12 PMMicroscopic Fed rates and opaque information out of China have combined to distort the prices of industrial metals, but fundamentals such as years of rising stock/usage ratios are finally catching up. YTD: Copper JJC -28.5%, Lead LD -25%, Aluminum JJU -14.9%, Nickel JJN -23.7%. | Sep. 23, 2011, 1:12 PM | Comment!
Feb. 22, 2011, 11:21 AM
Feb. 3, 2011, 8:22 AM
LD vs. ETF Alternatives
The Dow Jones-UBS Lead Subindex Total ReturnSM is a sub-index of the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Total ReturnSM and is intended to reflect the returns that are potentially available through an unleveraged investment in the futures contracts on physical commodities comprising the index as well as the rate of interest that could be earned on cash collateral invested in specified Treasury Bills. The Dow Jones-UBS Lead Subindex Total ReturnSM is a single-commodity sub-index currently consisting of one futures contract on the commodity of lead, which is included in the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Total ReturnSM.
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