Monthly Metal Review

Overview

    A thriving recovery in global base metals demand is underway and is outpacing forecasts. The recovery is no longer confined to just a few metals in a few regions but has become widespread and is gaining momentum. Having been a drag on consumption for the past 18 months, OECD demand is now in firm growth territory, with Europe leading the way and the US and Japan not too far behind. Supply-side dynamics are further supporting demand for many metals with the tightness in scrap supply boosting buying of primary metal as a substitute. Increased metals demand has indeed become visible through firming physical premiums and declining LME inventories, which together with the flow of positive economic data readings is giving support to metals prices, which is expected to continue over the coming months. This price expectation was reinforced by the feedbacks from the CESCO conference in Chile. The clearest consensus was seen on mine supply, where it is apparent that many of the issues faced back in 2008 have begun to resurface such as producers facing rising cost pressures, skilled labour shortages, declining ore grades, delays to new projects and challenges in bringing new production to market.
    Global demand is now growing at a double-digit pace for all the base metals, which is reflective of the strong economic backdrop. Chinese GDP growth came in stronger than expected, at a two-year high of 11.9% in Q1 10, while US GDP grew by 4.5%.
    Both leading indicators and activity statistics suggest that industrial production has remained strong through Q1 and is likely to remain solid in Q2. On a year-on-year basis, the OECD + 6 (BRIC + Indonesia and South Africa) continued to rise in February, growing 13.1%.The Purchasing Managers Indices (PMIs) continued to defy pessimistic expectations by rising again in March. In the US, the PMI rose to 59.6, which is the highest level since mid-2004, while indices in the Euro area were also better, with Germany in particular showing strong gains from 57.2 to 60.2. In China, the PMI improved after what appears to be an issue with a seasonal adjustment for Chinese New Year, rising from 52.0 to 55.1. That said, there was some evidence to suggest PMIs should soon ease from their current high levels, albeit to remain in expansionary territory.
    Interestingly enough, global auto production remains on course to rise by 20% in 2010 after the dramatic cuts in production last year. However such a rise is mainly driven by China, where this year, auto sales are forecast to rise by 25% to 17 million units.
   In the very end of the month, base metals prices retreated as worries over Greece, Europe and the euro bring volatility to the market. In fact, rating agency Standard & Poor’s decision to slash Greek debt to junk status and downgrade Portugal and Spain largely heightened concerns. However, Greece has since agreed with the EU and the IMF on the terms of a multi-billion euro rescue package aimed at averting a sovereign default.

Daily Prices

April 2010

Copper
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 7745.08
30-04-2010 7365
29-04-2010 7395
28-04-2010 7410.5
27-04-2010 7645
26-04-2010 7760
23-04-2010 7660
22-04-2010 7661
21-04-2010 7666
20-04-2010 7787
19-04-2010 7656
16-04-2010 7905.5
15-04-2010 7875
14-04-2010 7924.5
13-04-2010 7845
12-04-2010 7915
09-04-2010 7896
08-04-2010 7795.5
07-04-2010 7908
06-04-2010 7950.5
01-04-2010 7881
Silver
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average 18.10
30-04-2010 18.62
29-04-2010 18.15
28-04-2010 17.96
27-04-2010 18.16
26-04-2010 18.35
23-04-2010 17.89
22-04-2010 17.98
21-04-2010 17.82
20-04-2010 18
19-04-2010 17.5
16-04-2010 18.35
15-04-2010 18.27
14-04-2010 18.39
13-04-2010 18.16
12-04-2010 18.49
09-04-2010 18.34
08-04-2010 17.98
07-04-2010 17.97
06-04-2010 17.92
01-04-2010 17.69
PM MEAN AM Gold
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average -
30-04-2010 -
29-04-2010 -
28-04-2010 -
27-04-2010 -
26-04-2010 -
23-04-2010 -
22-04-2010 -
21-04-2010 -
20-04-2010 -
19-04-2010 -
16-04-2010 -
15-04-2010 -
14-04-2010 -
13-04-2010 -
12-04-2010 -
09-04-2010 -
08-04-2010 -
07-04-2010 -
06-04-2010 -
01-04-2010 -
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average -
30-04-2010 -
29-04-2010 -
28-04-2010 -
27-04-2010 -
26-04-2010 -
23-04-2010 -
22-04-2010 -
21-04-2010 -
20-04-2010 -
19-04-2010 -
16-04-2010 -
15-04-2010 -
14-04-2010 -
13-04-2010 -
12-04-2010 -
09-04-2010 -
08-04-2010 -
07-04-2010 -
06-04-2010 -
01-04-2010 -
Date(Fix.) ($/OZ)
Average 1148.69
30-04-2010 1179.25
29-04-2010 1166.75
28-04-2010 1161
27-04-2010 1149.5
26-04-2010 1154.5
23-04-2010 1139.5
22-04-2010 1133.75
21-04-2010 1143
20-04-2010 1144.75
19-04-2010 1136.25
16-04-2010 1151.5
15-04-2010 1154.5
14-04-2010 1153.75
13-04-2010 1148.25
12-04-2010 1158.75
09-04-2010 1152.5
08-04-2010 1148
07-04-2010 1142
06-04-2010 1132.75
01-04-2010 1123.5
Lead
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 2264.85
30-04-2010 2176
29-04-2010 2229
28-04-2010 2225
27-04-2010 2291
26-04-2010 2310.5
23-04-2010 2253.5
22-04-2010 2275.5
21-04-2010 2295
20-04-2010 2264
19-04-2010 2187.5
16-04-2010 2368
15-04-2010 2290
14-04-2010 2333.5
13-04-2010 2305.5
12-04-2010 2315
09-04-2010 2280
08-04-2010 2225
07-04-2010 2262.5
06-04-2010 2228
01-04-2010 2182.5
Zinc
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 2366.68
30-04-2010 2256
29-04-2010 2315
28-04-2010 2295
27-04-2010 2375
26-04-2010 2402
23-04-2010 2355.5
22-04-2010 2385.5
21-04-2010 2383.5
20-04-2010 2389.5
19-04-2010 2332
16-04-2010 2488.5
15-04-2010 2394
14-04-2010 2385.5
13-04-2010 2367.5
12-04-2010 2380.5
09-04-2010 2356
08-04-2010 2325
07-04-2010 2390
06-04-2010 2387.5
01-04-2010 2370
Tin
Date(Fix.) ($/MT)
Average 18683.50
30-04-2010 18095
29-04-2010 18450
28-04-2010 18100
27-04-2010 18805
26-04-2010 19050
23-04-2010 18955
22-04-2010 18820
21-04-2010 18935
20-04-2010 19120
19-04-2010 18700
16-04-2010 19135
15-04-2010 18755
14-04-2010 18630
13-04-2010 18725
12-04-2010 18695
09-04-2010 18605
08-04-2010 18580
07-04-2010 18475
06-04-2010 18350
01-04-2010 18690