Commodity markets rise on growing risk appetite


Sun, Apr 28, 2013 - Page 15

Global commodity markets rebounded this week from recent losses on the back of growing investor appetite for risk, dealers said.

“Commodity prices are firmer, having posted varying degrees of recovery from the previous week’s widespread price declines,” Barclays analyst Sudakshina Unnikrishnan said.

“However, for many commodity markets, we would view this as a temporary reprieve spurred by a combination of short covering, more positive macro data and the lack of a risk-off sentiment that characterized the previous week,” the analyst said.

Markets shrugged off weaker-than-expected economic growth in the US, which is a key consumer of many raw materials. US first-quarter economic growth came in at a modest 2.5 percent, a rebound from the previous quarter but slower than expected.

PRECIOUS METALS: Gold rallied sharply after striking a 2011 low point last week.

“An impressive rebound, and one that has been driven on the whole by massive physical demand from all around the world. The main buyers have as usual been the Indians and the Chinese,” said David Govett, head of precious metals at commodities broker Marex Spectron.

The precious metal had slumped on April 16 to US$1,321.95 — a level that was last seen on January 2011 — following weak Chinese growth data and reports that crisis-hit Cyprus was planning to sell some of its gold reserves.

Silver also won back ground after hitting a nadir of US$22.07 an ounce last week — which was last witnessed in October 2010. By late Friday on the London Bullion Market, the price of gold rallied to US$1,471.50 an ounce from US$1,405.50 a week earlier.

Silver increased to US$24.02 an ounce from US$23.66.

On the London Platinum and Palladium Market, platinum rose to US$1,483 an ounce from US$1,425.

Palladium advanced to US$681 an ounce from US$677.

OIL: Prices rebounded from the previous week’s multi-month lows, boosted by positive sentiment, geopolitical tensions in Syria, hopes of an interest rate cut by the European Central Bank, and signs of strengthening US energy demand.

By Friday on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in June climbed to US$102.35 per barrel compared with US$99.73 a week earlier.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) or light sweet crude for June rallied to US$92.18 a barrel from US$87.97.

BASE METALS: Base or industrial metal prices also won back ground after recent heavy falls.

“The metals complex appears to be seeing some near-term support as selling pressure eases and investors take profits and unwind short positions. This may create some near-term strength,” Deutsche Bank analysts said in a note to clients.

By Friday on the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months jumped to US$7,085 a tonne from US$6,921 a week earlier.

Three-month aluminum rose to US$1,901 a tonne from US$1,885.

Three-month lead increased to US$2,034 a tonne from US$2,001.

Three-month tin advanced to US$20,850 a tonne from US$20,760.

Three-month nickel gained to US$15,300 a tonne from US$15,221.