Platinum prices spiked this week as deadly violence costing the lives of 34 people struck a platinum mine in South Africa.
Oil prices hit three-month highs on a number of factors, including positive US economic data and growing hopes of fresh economic stimulus by global central banks.
PRECIOUS METALS: Platinum prices hit the highest level since early last month, at US$1,462.50 an ounce, owing to the violence at a platinum mine in South Africa run by London-listed miner Lonmin. The metal’s price has risen about 4 percent since Thursday.
South African police on Friday said they fired only in self-defense in a clash with striking mineworkers, in which 34 people died. The workers at the Marikana mine were on a weeklong wildcat strike demanding a tripling of their wages from the current 4,000 rand (US$486) a month.
Gold prices, meanwhile, fell after an industry body said global demand for the precious metal had fallen to its lowest level in two years on weaker buying in main markets India and China, despite rising demand from central banks.
Worldwide demand fell 7 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, the World Gold Council said in a report.
By late Friday on the London Bullion Market, gold fell to US$1,614.75 an ounce from US$1,618.50 a week earlier.
Silver climbed to US$28.20 an ounce from US$27.88.
On the London Platinum and Palladium Market, platinum surged to US$1,455 an ounce from US$1,399.
Palladium gained to US$592 an ounce from US$578 an ounce.
OIL: World oil prices hit three-month highs before cooling on Friday on profit-taking.
Crude futures on Thursday reached the highest levels since May on encouraging economic figures in top crude consumer the US, traders said. New York oil hit US$95.69 a barrel and Brent US$117.03. The Brent price was for its September contract which expired at the close of trading on Thursday.
By Friday on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in October stood at US$114 a barrel compared with US$111.84 for the September contract a week earlier.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) or light sweet crude for September jumped to US$95.21 a barrel from US$92.30.
BASE METALS: Aluminum hit a near three-year low at US$1827.25 a tonne on Thursday.
By late Friday on the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months jumped to US$7,537 a tonne from US$7,440 a week earlier.
Three-month aluminum fell to US$1,857 a tonne from US$1,877. Three-month lead dropped to US$1,872 a tonne from US$1,898. Three-month tin rose to US$18,460 a tonne from US$17,785. And three-month nickel grew to US$15,467 a tonne from US$15,305.
HEAVY INVESTMENT: Moody’s affirmed the firm’s ‘Aa3’ rating with a ‘stable’ outlook due to its leading position in the industry and ability to match customer requirements Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC, 台積電) revenue this year is expected to increase about 21 percent to NT$1.29 trillion (US$44.01 billion) from NT$1.07 trillion last year, driven by strong demand for advanced 5-nanometer and 7-nanometer chips mainly used in smartphones and high-performance computing devices, a Moody’s Investors Service report on Wednesday said. TSMC’s rate of revenue growth next year is to increase to 7.5 percent, the ratings agency said. The company, which supplies 5-nanometer chips for Apple Inc’s new iPad series, has introduced the advanced chips ahead of its competitors and gained a significant share of the market for the foundry industry’s
Shin Kong Financial Holding Co (新光金控) yesterday said that its insurance unit would adjust its investment portfolio after being banned from buying new stocks a day earlier by the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC). “We will research what we can do based on the commission’s specific instructions after we receive the regulator’s formal documents,” Shin Kong Financial spokesman Sunny Hsu (徐順鋆) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The commission on Tuesday fined Shin Kong Life Insurance Co (新光人壽) NT$27.6 million (US$941,722) for reckless investment, and demanded that the insurer reduce its overseas investment ratio from 43 percent to 39 percent. The fine would affect
Taipei Times: When do you think the hospitality industry can return to how it was before the COVID-19 pandemic? How does Formosa International Hotels Group (FIH, 晶華酒店集團) fare this quarter and beyond? FIH chairman Steve Pan (潘思亮): The virus outbreak will have a serious impact on business travel, driven mainly by meetings, incentive travel, conferences and exhibitions over the past three decades. For the past six months, many businesspeople have grown used to exchanging information on the Internet, where more people can participate. The trend might sustain for three to five years until people are vaccinated and it is safe to
NO VIRUS BLUES: A SEMI Taiwan official said that the virus does not slow down the global semiconductor industry’s investment in manufacturing equipment The production value of the nation’s semiconductor industry is expected to grow 16.7 percent this year from last year, outpacing the global industry’s 3.3 percent growth, industry association SEMI said yesterday. That would help Taiwan safeguard its second spot in the global semiconductor market with a production value of more than NT$3 trillion (US$102.73 billion), SEMI Taiwan president Terry Tsao (曹世綸) told a media briefing in Taipei for the Semicon Taiwan trade show beginning today. The global semiconductor industry’s production value is expected to increase to US$426 billion this year, SEMI said. In terms of semiconductor equipment investment, equipment billings from Taiwanese firms