G20, OPEC meetings in focus & spike in crude oil prices

22nd June – 28th June

1. Gold Monetization Scheme likely to be tweaked

June 24, 2019

According to gold industry sources, the central government at a meeting on June 21st discussed tweaking the Gold Monetization Scheme (GMS). This scheme was introduced by the NDA during their first term in 2015. The aim of this scheme is to reduce dependence on imports of the precious metal and to harness the 25,000 tons of gold that is held by residents in various forms. India’s gold imports were 766 tonnes during 2018 and 837 tonnes during 2017.

Source: Economic Times

2. India intensifies talks to check oil prices as US-Iran tensions rise

June 24, 2019

India has stepped up its diplomatic initiatives with top oil producing countries over the rising US-Iran tensions amidst rising crude oil prices. Oil prices have soared in the recent past after Iran shot down a US drone and US re-employed sanctions on Iran. India’s oil minister Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan has spoken to Russia’s deputy Prime Minister Yury P Trutnev, US energy secretary Rick Perry and Saudi energy minister Khalid Al-Falih to discuss the geopolitical situation and its effect on crude oil prices.

Source: Economic Times

3. Gems & jewellery sector seeks cut in gold import duty to 4%

June 26, 2019

Prior to the Union Budget for 2019-20, the gems and jewellery sector has unanimously requested a reduction in gold import duty to 4 percent which would also reduce smuggling significantly. The import duty on gold has been levied to reduce the Current Account Deficit (CAD), which currently stands at 2.5 percent of GDP in 2019.

Source: Money control

4. Oil prices rise 3% as U.S. crude, products stockpiles fall

June 26, 2019

Oil prices jumped by about 2% on Wednesday after the US EIA inventory data, which saw a bigger than expected draw. The strong drawdown was a result of strong demand, which improved the sentiment further for crude, which took crude to a month’s high. The product drawdown coincides with the largest and oldest refinery on the U.S. East being shut after a fire last week caused significant damages.

Source: Nasdaq

5. Gold enters long-term bull market but analysts urge short-term caution

June 26, 2019

Gold prices have surged by about 11.50% in the last one month which can be accounted as the sharpest rise in the recent past. This is the highest monthly gain since March 2016, and this sharp rise has resulted in softened demand for gold as retailers have reduced buying while the sale of old metal and jewellery has increased.

Source: Business Standard

6. Oil edges higher ahead of G20 & OPEC meetings

June 27, 2019

Crude oil prices have risen sharply in the past few days in anticipation of production being extended by OPEC and also in the backdrop of the G20 meeting between US and China in Japan which could provide a breakthrough in talks. OPEC+ (OPEC and its allies), which includes Russia, is likely to curb output by about 1.2 million bpd ; the production cut deal ends at June end and the meetings scheduled for July 1-2 in Vienna are expected to extend these cuts.

Source: Reuters

7. Oil firms' freight costs spike as war clouds gather in Gulf

June 28, 2019

Tensions in the Strait of Hormuz have resulted in a rise in freight costs of Indian oil refining and shipping companies as insurance premiums shot up by $3,000 a day. In the past few days, the war rhetoric between the US and Iran has led to this spike in tensions after Iran shot down US’s drone. In response, India has dispatched two Indian naval warships for the safety of its oil tankers.

Source: DNA

8. Rupee settles 8 paise higher at 69.07 against US dollar

June 27, 2019

The Indian rupee recovered from initial losses to close higher by 8 paisa against the dollar. This strength could be advocated on the back of recent gains in the equity markets along with some softness in crude oil prices since Thursday. However, the pair continues to trade in a range ahead of the all important G20 meeting scheduled for the weekend in Japan.

Source: Moneycontrol