Monthly Metal Review

Overview

Renewed optimism swept through financial markets following an encouraging start to the Q2 earnings reporting season in the US which propelled equity markets higher. More positive sentiment that an economic pick up was back on track buoyed commodity markets.
Most commodities, not just base metals, saw their prices peak so far this year towards the end of 1H 2009. However, such price strength is not indicative of a rapid improvement in underlying demand, but rather a remarkable robustness in the risk appetite of the wider investment community, and a combination of the effectiveness of supply-side production cuts in late 2008 and early 2009, as well as radical de-stocking by some metals’ end-users. Having gone so high, so fast, on very little demand support from Western markets, the price risk for the rest of this year is to the downside, as the initial euphoria that “the worst is over” is replaced by greater sobriety and a mood that “the best will be a long time coming”.
For the rest of 2009, further re-stocking will be the key for price sustainability; but if we enter 2010 without a much firmer indication of an economic recovery in Western markets, the first half of 2010 could be marked by diminished price volatility and/or price weakness from current levels.
Some metals will do better than others - those whose producers cut early and cut deep stand to gain most. Eventually, base metals have moved in almost perfect lockstep with equities, suggesting that much of the first half of 2009 rally is confidence based. This rally is likely to slow, but, barring further fresh systemic shocks to global capital markets, is unlikely to collapse all the way back down to the troughs at the start of the year. Gold however disappointed with just a 2% gain during the first half of 2009, as its safe-haven qualities became less important and risk-taking more prevalent.
In China, both refined metals output and net imports of refined products have rebounded. Higher Chinese prices relative to the rest of the world have created better opportunities for arbitrage-related imports, hence transferring into a surge in Chinese imports of copper, zinc and tin.
In the US, new home sales rose 11% month-on-month in June to an annualised rate of 384,000, the highest rate of sales since November 2008. Housing starts also rose 3.6% month-on-month. However, June’s rate of new home sales remained down 21.3% year-on-year. Oil prices rose this month, with WTI currently trading at around USD66/bbl. Oil prices continued to be moved by economic indicators showing that the recession forces are abating. Hope is definitely emerging from the East, where China reported GDP growth of 7.9% in the second quarter of this year.

Daily Prices

July 2009

Copper
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 5215.54
31-07-2009 5750
30-07-2009 5497
29-07-2009 5410.5
28-07-2009 5615
27-07-2009 5615
24-07-2009 5551
23-07-2009 5474
22-07-2009 5342
21-07-2009 5345
20-07-2009 5400
17-07-2009 5230
16-07-2009 5231.5
15-07-2009 5181.5
14-07-2009 5011
13-07-2009 4883
10-07-2009 4840
09-07-2009 4821
08-07-2009 4850
07-07-2009 5012
06-07-2009 4859
03-07-2009 4991
02-07-2009 5006
01-07-2009 5042
Silver
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average 13.36
31-07-2009 13.63
30-07-2009 13.4
29-07-2009 13.6
28-07-2009 14.02
27-07-2009 14.06
24-07-2009 13.78
23-07-2009 13.76
22-07-2009 13.4
21-07-2009 13.52
20-07-2009 13.73
17-07-2009 13.16
16-07-2009 13.21
15-07-2009 13.27
14-07-2009 12.88
13-07-2009 12.47
10-07-2009 12.63
09-07-2009 12.89
08-07-2009 13.05
07-07-2009 13.32
06-07-2009 13.03
03-07-2009 13.44
02-07-2009 13.41
01-07-2009 13.65
PM MEAN AM Gold
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average -
31-07-2009 -
30-07-2009 -
29-07-2009 -
28-07-2009 -
27-07-2009 -
24-07-2009 -
23-07-2009 -
22-07-2009 -
21-07-2009 -
20-07-2009 -
17-07-2009 -
16-07-2009 -
15-07-2009 -
14-07-2009 -
13-07-2009 -
10-07-2009 -
09-07-2009 -
08-07-2009 -
07-07-2009 -
06-07-2009 -
03-07-2009 -
02-07-2009 -
01-07-2009 -
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average -
31-07-2009 -
30-07-2009 -
29-07-2009 -
28-07-2009 -
27-07-2009 -
24-07-2009 -
23-07-2009 -
22-07-2009 -
21-07-2009 -
20-07-2009 -
17-07-2009 -
16-07-2009 -
15-07-2009 -
14-07-2009 -
13-07-2009 -
10-07-2009 -
09-07-2009 -
08-07-2009 -
07-07-2009 -
06-07-2009 -
03-07-2009 -
02-07-2009 -
01-07-2009 -
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average 934.23
31-07-2009 939
30-07-2009 932.5
29-07-2009 931
28-07-2009 944.25
27-07-2009 955
24-07-2009 951.5
23-07-2009 950
22-07-2009 948.25
21-07-2009 947.75
20-07-2009 952.75
17-07-2009 937.5
16-07-2009 935
15-07-2009 938
14-07-2009 924.75
13-07-2009 908.5
10-07-2009 913
09-07-2009 911.75
08-07-2009 918
07-07-2009 924
06-07-2009 924.5
03-07-2009 932.5
02-07-2009 929.5
01-07-2009 938.25
Lead
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 1678.61
31-07-2009 1842.5
30-07-2009 1774.5
29-07-2009 1732.5
28-07-2009 1774
27-07-2009 1789
24-07-2009 1739
23-07-2009 1699
22-07-2009 1658
21-07-2009 1674.5
20-07-2009 1699
17-07-2009 1604
16-07-2009 1600.5
15-07-2009 1611
14-07-2009 1569
13-07-2009 1567
10-07-2009 1594
09-07-2009 1594.5
08-07-2009 1625
07-07-2009 1714.5
06-07-2009 1653
03-07-2009 1690.5
02-07-2009 1708
01-07-2009 1695
Zinc
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 1578.61
31-07-2009 1748
30-07-2009 1670
29-07-2009 1621.5
28-07-2009 1705
27-07-2009 1706
24-07-2009 1677.5
23-07-2009 1642.5
22-07-2009 1627
21-07-2009 1618
20-07-2009 1643
17-07-2009 1520
16-07-2009 1505.5
15-07-2009 1517.5
14-07-2009 1469
13-07-2009 1461
10-07-2009 1473
09-07-2009 1485.5
08-07-2009 1517.5
07-07-2009 1569
06-07-2009 1497
03-07-2009 1540.5
02-07-2009 1549.5
01-07-2009 1544.5
Tin
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 14038.91
31-07-2009 15000
30-07-2009 14610
29-07-2009 14350
28-07-2009 14705
27-07-2009 15050
24-07-2009 14955
23-07-2009 14425
22-07-2009 14250
21-07-2009 14200
20-07-2009 13755
17-07-2009 13175
16-07-2009 13210
15-07-2009 13370
14-07-2009 13085
13-07-2009 12650
10-07-2009 12450
09-07-2009 13350
08-07-2009 14105
07-07-2009 14450
06-07-2009 14300
03-07-2009 14500
02-07-2009 14490
01-07-2009 14460