Abans Group Commodity World Round Up

19 Apr - 22 Apr

1. ECB Maintains Dovish Stance

Apr 22, 2021

The European Central Bank, as widely expected, left its benchmark rate at 0.00% and said it would stick with plans to accelerate emergency bond purchases until March 2022 in a bid to keep bond yields steady. The dovish stance from the ECB comes even as the central bank expressed optimism over the recovery as the bloc gets its vaccine rollout back on track.

Source: Reuters

2. U.S. weekly jobless claims hit 13-month low; home sales tumble

Apr 22, 2021

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits decreased 39,000 to a seasonally adjusted 547,000 for the week ended April 17, the lowest since mid-March 2020, the Labor Department said. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 617,000 applications for the latest week. The housing market is backpedalling. Existing home sales dropped 3.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.01 million units last month, the lowest level since August 2020, the National Association of Realtors said in a separate report on Thursday. The plunge reflected a supply squeeze, which boosted the median house price a record 17.2% from a year ago to an all-time high of $329,100.

Source: Reuters

3. Japan’s Factory PMI expands but Consumer prices fall again

Apr 22, 2021

Japan’s manufacturing activity expanded for a third month in April while a contraction in the service sector continued amid a fresh wave of coronavirus infections. The au Jibun Bank Japan’s purchasing managers index for manufacturing sector activity rose 0.6 point to 53.3, while its measure of service sector activity was unchanged at 48.3. Japan’s key consumer prices fell at a slower pace in March for an eighth straight month of declines as pandemic-related business restrictions weighed on activity, underscoring the challenge the central bank faces as it tries to revive inflation. Consumer prices excluding fresh food edged down 0.1% from a year earlier, after a 0.4% decline in February, with smaller falls in energy costs helping narrow the drop, the ministry of internal affairs reported Friday. Economists had forecast a 0.2% decrease.

Source: Bloomberg

4. Oil demand to improve in US and Europe

Apr 22, 2021

Investors are expecting an increase in fuel demand as the economy recovers and lockdown ease in the U.S. and Europe. In the U.S, refiner Valero said gasoline and diesel demand recovered back to pre-COVID-19 levels, at 93% and 100% respectively, with its chief commercial officer Gary Simmons added the firm is "pretty bullish on gasoline going forward". Europe is expecting an increasing demand as France looks to reopen schools on Monday and lift domestic travel curbs which started earlier in the month, on May 3.

Source: Investing

5. Palladium Hits Record High Near $2,900

Apr 22, 2021

Palladium roared to yet another record high on Thursday, closing in on the $3,000 an ounce target. Palladium has more than doubled in value over the past two years ago due to a shortage of the commodity versus explosive growth in the automobile market, which was expanding consistently. Citigroup’s base case is for palladium to reach a historic high of $3,000 during the next three months. The peak could even be $3,500 if disruptions at Norilskiy Nickel's Siberian mines — the largest palladium producing facility in the world — turn out to be worse than estimated, the bank said.

Source: Investing

6. Silver demand surging to its highest since 2015

Apr 22, 2021

Global silver demand will rise this year to its highest since 2015 as jewellery and industrial offtake rebounds after the coronavirus pandemic, helping to lift prices, the Silver Institute said in a report on Thursday. Excluding ETFs, global silver demand will rise to 1.033 billion ounces in 2021 from 896.1 million ounces last year, according to the report compiled for the institute by consultants Metals Focus. Silver supply will rise to 1.056 billion ounces from 976.2 million ounces in 2020, implying oversupply of 23.3 million ounces this year - the sixth consecutive annual surplus, though down from 80.1 million ounces in 2020.

Source: Reuters

7. China March copper output at lowest monthly total since July

Apr 21, 2021

China's refined copper output rose 18.2% year-on-year in March but the monthly total of 870,000 tonnes was the lowest since July, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed on Wednesday. China March zinc output +10.9% y/y at 550,000 tonnes, lowest since August, China March lead output +32.8% y/y at 635,000 tonnes, Alumina output +11.3% y/y at 6.54 mln tonnes, highest since September.

Source: Reuters

8. Global nickel surplus widens in February to 6,200 tonnes 

Apr 19, 2021

The global nickel market surplus expanded to 6,200 tonnes in February from a downwardly revised surplus of 3,500 tonnes in the previous month, data from the International Nickel Study Group (INSG) showed on Monday. During the first two months of the year, the global market saw a surplus of 9,700 tonnes, down from a surplus of 29,300 tonnes in the same period of 2020, Lisbon-based INSG added.

Source: Reuters

9. China keeps benchmark lending rate unchanged

Apr 19, 2021

China on Tuesday kept the one-year loan prime rate (LPR) unchanged at 3.85% and five-year LPR at 4.65%. That was in line with predictions from a majority of traders and analysts in a Reuters poll, who had expected no change to either the one-year or five-year LPR.

Source: CNBC