RBI announces issue of SGB’s, US removes India from Currency Watch List & US rules out sanction waivers on Iranian oil imports

25th May – 31st May

1. RBI to issue SGB’s every month from June 2019 to Sept 2019

May 31, 2019

The Reserve Bank of India announced on Thursday the issue of Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs), on behalf of the Government of India, every month from June 2019 to September 2019. The bonds bear interest at the rate of 2.50 per cent (fixed rate) per annum on the amount of the initial investment. The maximum limit of subscription will be 4 kg for individual, 4 kg for HUF and 20 kg for trusts and similar entities per fiscal (April-March).

Source: Indian Express

2. US-China tariff war hitting castor seed oil industry in India

May 31, 2019

India’s castor oil exports have gone down by 8.8% in April 2019 or 45,987 million tonnes against 50,312 million tonnes in the same month last year, affected mainly due to the ongoing US-China tariff war. Economic measures taken by the Trump government against Chinese goods have resulted in sluggish demand from the industrial units.

Source: Financial Express

3. India not under US Currency Watch List

May 30, 2019

The US has removed India from its monitoring list for currency manipulation. The US has cleared doubts over India’s foreign exchange policies, including undervaluation of currencies to gain export advantages. India did not qualify for inclusion in the currency manipulator list on at least two of the three criteria.

Source: Economic Times

4. US rules out sanction waivers on oil imports from Iran

May 29, 2019

The US has ruled out sanction waivers on Iran oil imports and maintains its tough policy stance on Tehran. President Trump refused to give waivers to countries such as Japan, South Korea, Turkey, China and India from buying oil from Iran, in an attempt to reduce Iran’s oil exports to zero.

Source : Business Line

5. Floods in Oklahoma constrained crude flow

May 24, 2019

Flooding throughout the Midwest constrained crude flows from the main US storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma. Fuel markets in the area have been roiled by pipeline outages and disruptions due to the floods. US crude futures gained almost 1% after this news, but later cooled down on the US-China tariff war.

Source: Reuters

6. Russia’s oil production falls after Druzhba contamination

May 27, 2019

Russian oil production and exports fell in May after the Druzhba contamination report. Five million tonnes of oil were contaminated last month with organic chloride and some of the dirty crude is still stuck in pipelines in Belarus and Eastern Europe. Russia’s oil production over the same period totalled 11.126 million barrels per day (bpd), down from 11.147 million bpd during May 1-21.

Source: Reuters

7. Fundamentals suggest a tight supply situation for castor

May 27, 2019

Profit booking and famers sell to lock profits at higher levels are the reasons behind the recent drop. The fundamentals suggest a tight supply situation and prices may go up further from these levels after a consolidation. The castor seed carry over stock is at 4.5 lakh tons, while the output is projected to decline by 30% to 10.60 lakh tones against last year’s production of 14.16 lakh tonnes due to drought-like situations in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra ; this is the key reason behind the recent rally in castor prices.

Source: Business Line

8. Platinum imports may climb up to 18 per cent to 7.08 tonnes this year

May 24, 2019

Platinum imports may climb up to 18 per cent to 7.08 tonnes this year as platinum has become cheaper by Rs. 8,090 per 10 gm in comparison to gold. Platinum jewellery demand also rose nearly 30%-35% this year on Akshaya Tritiya. Use of platinum jewellery is a new trend in the metro cities and this is further expanding to the Tier-2 cities. Rising use of platinum jewellery in place of expensive gold is the reason behind the increased import demand for the metal. Gold prices are rising while platinum is trading near 20 year lows.

Source: Economic Times