Tag - PGMs

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Friday, October 17 2014

Riddle of inventory levels keeps platinum investors shy

Investors are unlikely to rush back into platinum any time soon after a minimal price reaction to its biggest-ever supply shock highlighted a major problem: no-one knows how much metal exists above ground or more importantly who holds it.

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LME to take over London platinum, palladium fixes

The London Metal Exchange, owned by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd, will take charge of London's platinum and palladium pricing, also known as "fixes", from Dec. 1, replacing a teleconference with an electronic platform.

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Monday, October 13 2014

Russia, South Africa to Become the OPEC of Platinum?

Platinum and palladium are not performing as well as expected this year, and major producers Russia and South Africa have decided to do something about it. Bloomberg reported last Wednesday that the two countries will meet next month to discuss their mutual interest in the white metals, and the possibility of bolstering prices.

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Wednesday, October 8 2014

Russia, South Africa Seek to Support Platinum Price in Talks

Russia and South Africa, together holding about 80 percent of the earth’s platinum-group metal reserves, will meet to discuss ways to buoy slumping prices.

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Tuesday, September 2 2014

Platinum group metals output to fall in South Africa in 2014: Deutsche Bank

Deutsche Bank estimates that platinum palladium and rhodium production in South Africa will be down 29%, 37% and 26% respectively in 2014 compared to our estimates at the start of the year. Moreover, Deutsche Bank sees a permanent reduction in South African productive capacity following strike action.

As a result, South African PGM production is unlikely to return to pre-strike levels and consequently Deutsche Bank views market deficits in platinum, palladium and rhodium as being larger and more durable than before.

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Friday, August 22 2014

U.S. Mint Platinum Coins Bypassed in Rush for Gold

Five months after the U.S. Mint began producing coins made with platinum, sales have all but collapsed as investors continue to favor gold and silver.

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Thursday, July 31 2014

Platinum to Palladium Fixings Join Precious Metals Revamp

The company that runs platinum and palladium fixings in London is seeking a new administrator for the price-setting process after similar changes were proposed for rituals in gold and silver.

The London Platinum & Palladium Fixing Company Ltd. will “shortly” start a request-for-proposals exercise for firms interested in assuming responsibility for the procedure that takes place each business day at 9:45 a.m. and 2 p.m. by phone, it said today in a statement. BASF Metals Ltd., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., HSBC Holdings Plc and Standard Bank Plc conduct the fixings, the London Platinum & Palladium Market website shows

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Tuesday, July 29 2014

Rhodium Poised for Biggest Monthly Advance Since 2009

Rhodium advanced to the highest price in 16 months and is set for the biggest monthly gain since 2009 as demand from carmakers increased amid restricted supply.

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Friday, July 11 2014

Platinum output down 49% due to strike

South African output of platinum-group metals sank the most on record in May after a strike halted production at the world’s three biggest producers.

Production of the metals plunged 49 percent from a year earlier as total mining output fell 6.5 percent,

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Monday, July 7 2014

PGMs Will Lead the Charge of the Bulls

In this interview with The Gold Report, Smith says that platinum group metals will lead the resurgence and have a favorable long-term risk/reward ratio. He outlines some PGM, gold and silver companies that can grab the bull by its horns.

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Saturday, June 28 2014

Strike is over but platinum, palladium prices have plenty upside

Independent research house Capital Economics says what will keep prices robust is strong demand from the auto sector (see chart) and the substantial risks to supply that still exist.

South Africa’s mines have been struggling with profitability and productivity for a while. Indeed, Anglo American had signalled its intention to sell its South African platinum mines even before the latest strike. Companies will be forced to restructure and mechanise in order to enhance competitiveness. Redundancies – and further union protests – appear inevitable.

South Africa and Russia combined account for close to 80% of global supply of palladium and 70% of platinum output which are mainly used to clean emissions in automobiles.

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Thursday, June 26 2014

Secretive Swiss vaults may hold missing link in platinum price equation

Underground vaults next to a Swiss farming village may reveal one reason for the platinum market's indifference to its biggest ever supply shock.

Most analysts and market players expected steep price increases for the precious metal as a record five month mining strike in South Africa, which ended on Tuesday, wiped out some 40 percent of global supply.

Yet values have been stuck in a $140 an ounce range gaining just five percent so far this year.

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CPM predicts largest-ever platinum market deficit in 2014

Regardless of Monday’s announced end of the South African platinum strike, New York-based commodities research firm, CPM Group, forecasts that the platinum market is expected to record the largest deficit ever this year, as the shortfall of total supply of newly-refined platinum relative to fabrication demand is estimated at 818,823 ounces this year.

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Tuesday, June 24 2014

Platinum union declares end to South Africa's longest strike

South Africa's AMCU union declared a five-month platinum strike "officially over" on Monday as thousands of miners roared their approval when leader Joseph Mathunjwa asked if they wanted to end the longest work stoppage in the country's history.

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Friday, June 13 2014

The Palladium Perfect Storm

Six weeks was all it took for the palladium market to get spooked into a panic.

When a major mining strike in South Africa shutdown all palladium production in the country on January 23rd, the clock started ticking on the palladium price, with analysts expecting a sharp rise in value if the strike wasn’t resolved quickly.

Well it wasn’t resolved quickly, and six weeks later on March 4th the inevitable happened… palladium punched through its upper resistance of $760 an ounce held in place throughout the previous 12 months. It has kept right on climbing ever since, rising to a multi-year high of $860 yesterday for a jump of 15% since the strike began, with plenty more upside expected.

“We believe the market is working under a structural production/consumption deficit,” chief precious metals analyst at HSBC, James Steel, revealed. “We are therefore bullish medium to longer term.”

Just what is behind palladium’s “structural production/consumption deficit”? Will this be enough to set palladium apart from the other precious metals that have been stuck in the mud for over two years?

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Platinum, palladium drop as union takes wage offer to striking S.African miners

Platinum and palladium posted their biggest daily losses for nearly a year on Thursday, after South African producers said they had reached "in principle" undertakings with the union to end a crippling five-month strike.

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Thursday, June 12 2014

Palladium Hits Highest Price in Three Years

Palladium prices surged to a three-year high, reflecting investors' concerns that a mining strike in No. 2 producer South Africa will choke off supplies.

"If there's not much supply, it all just gets sucked up" by manufacturers and other palladium consumers, said Frank Holmes,

The miners' strike, which involves some 70,000 workers, is the longest ever in South Africa. After Monday's talks ended without an agreement, newly appointed South African Mining Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi said he would exit from the talks.

Meanwhile, palladium users have few other places to turn for supply. Russia exports more palladium than South Africa, but relies on Cold War-era stockpiles to supplement production. Many analysts think those extra supplies are running low. No other country is a significant palladium producer.

"There is no reason to sell palladium right now," said Frank Lesh, a broker at Future Path Trading. "This thing can go to $1,000."

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Saturday, May 31 2014

Global Auto Sales Help to Drive Demand for Palladium

More than half the annual global demand of about 10 million ounces for palladium is from the automobile sector, while a quarter is used in other industries and in dentistry. Physically backed exchange-traded funds account for some demand, and about 4% of demand comes from jewelry.

Car sales in China, the world's biggest auto market, are expected to grow by 11% this year to reach 24 million units out of the global total of 88.5 million, according to industry consultancy Frost & Sullivan. It expects U.S. sales to climb about 4% to almost 16 million.

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Friday, May 30 2014

Platinum rises as stockpiles thin

"We probably have another 6-8 weeks to go before producers run really low on material they've stockpiled," said Standard Bank analyst Walter de Wet. "Lonmin have come out to say that they have some stuff in the pipeline that they are processing, and it seems there is some material at Impala and Anglo, too. Anglo on average probably has the most metal compared to the other two."

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Thursday, May 29 2014

Platinum, Palladium reach new 2014 highs

Even after the pay dispute in South Africa is resolved there will be a lag before production can be ramped up to full capacity, prolonging the delay in getting supply to the market.

It is clear that sources of secondary supply, like scrap, are unable to catch up with primary production losses, keeping the market very tight.

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