Norilsk Nickel, the world's largest nickel producer, expects nickel prices to remain where they currently are over the medium term, as market fundamentals remain the same over the next year or so.
Speaking on an interim results conference call, management said the supply of the metal would not go up materially until 2008, when projects being built by Inco and BHP Billiton (BIL) come on stream.
On the demand side no slow down is predicted, according to the company.
Nickel is currently trading at $30,700/t, 129% up since the year's starting price of $13,380/t.
Norilsk made an after tax profit of US$2.37 billion for the half year to end-June, compared to $974 million a year earlier. The company made US$4.2 billion in interim revenues, compared to US$3.3 billion the year before.
The company produced 117,000 tonnes of nickel, 187,000 tonnes of copper, 1.5 million ounces of palladium and 336,000 ounces of platinum in the half year.
South African platinum producers extract small amounts of nickel in the mining process.
For example, Implats (IMP) the second largest platinum miner, sold 14,800 tons of nickel in the financial year to end-June for $15,343/t. Nickel sales contributed 5.2% to total sales of 17.5 billion rand for the group.
African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) and LionOre own Nkomati, the country's primary nickel mine, which produces about 5,000 tons of nickel a year. Investigations are underway to boost that production.
Nickel Rises to 19-Year High, Stockpiles Fall to 2-Month Low
By Chia-Peck Wong
Oct. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Nickel prices rose to their highest in at least 19 years on the London Metal Exchange amid concern supply won't meet demand after inventories dropped to the lowest in more than two months.
Stockpiles of nickel, a metal used to enhance the anti- corrosiveness of stainless steel, fell 8.2 percent to 4,458 metric tons, the exchange said today in a daily report, the lowest since July 31. That is also the biggest daily drop since Sept. 27.
``There's simply no material around and consumption is still good,'' said Juan Pablo Orjuela, a London-based analyst at Koch Metals Trading Ltd., which trades on the exchange. ``For the foreseeable future, stockpiles are going down.''
Nickel for delivery in three months rose as much as $750, or 2.5 percent, to $30,250 a ton, the highest since at least 1987. It was at $30,175 at 9:56 a.m. local time. Inventories have slumped 88 percent this year, leading to a more than doubling of prices.
The jump in nickel prices hasn't deterred stainless-steel producers, which account for two-thirds of demand for the base metal, the International Nickel Study Group said Oct. 6. Demand will jump 10 percent this year to 1.37 million tons, compared with 1.24 million tons last year, the Lisbon-based industry group said. It will rise to 1.45 million tons next year.
``Stainless-steel production improved in the beginning of 2006 and has remained at record-high levels,'' the group said. Nickel usage fell last year as stainless-steel producers used less of the metal in their products, the group said.
Among other metals, copper for three-month delivery rose for the third straight day, by as much as $110, or 1.5 percent, to a one-week high of $7,570 a ton. It traded at $7,555 at 9:51 a.m. London time.
Aluminum for three-month delivery climbed $52, or 2 percent, to $2,642 a ton. Zinc gained as much as $150, or 4.2 percent, to $3,740 a ton, the highest since May 31. It traded at $3,700 a ton at 9:53 a.m. London time.
Historically the LME Dinner often proves to be a critical point for base metal prices. For example the bull market in base metals began to gather pace in October 2002, while the last downturn was triggered in October 2000.
Most aspects of the fundamentals remain favourable. Underlying demand growth is firm after last year?s surprising weakness due to destocking. In 2006, robust activity in the semis sector is filtering through to improved demand for the base metals. Although the OECD indicator is pointing to slower growth, our contacts with the industry provide little evidence that base metal demand will weaken.
The latest data on premiums also support this view. The high level of premiums reflects both good underlying demand and the tight supply position. Codelco has just set its annual copper premium for Europe for 2007 at $125/tonne compared to this year?s rate of $105/tonne. GFMS Metals Consulting notes improving premiums in most other markets, notably for zinc. Both the European and US premiums for zinc have more than doubled over the last year and currently stand at $300/tonne and $250/tonne respectively.
Is destocking in China over? We have noted the destocking process in China, which has seen base metal consumption, particularly for copper and nickel, underperform the economy as a whole. Data on the key base metal consuming industries point to a more robust rate of demand growth. Inevitably demand growth is a finite process and we expect stronger demand conditions in China in 2007 than in 2006.
: Nickel Rises to a 19-Year High as Mine Blocked by
Nickel Rises to a 19-Year High as Mine Blocked by Protestors
By Marianne Stigset
Oct. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Nickel rose to its highest in at least 19 years after protesters blocked a mine owned by Eramet SA on New Caledonia and inventory tracked by the London Metal Exchange fell the most in three months.
Eramet runs the world's biggest ferronickel plant and managed to ship metal to Europe this week amid a general strike on the Pacific island. Protesters are still blocking one of four mines, Pierre Alla, chief executive officer of Eramet's local unit, said by telephone.
``Nickel is suffering from some serious subtraction threats,'' said Mo Ahmadzadeh, president of Mitsui Bussan Commodities Ltd., in an interview in London today. ``The world is short of new nickel projects. It's a tense situation.''
Nickel for delivery in three months was $50 higher at $30,550 a metric ton on the LME as of 11:06 a.m. London time, after earlier adding as much as $200, or 0.7 percent. Prices of nickel, used in batteries and to rust-proof steel, have more than doubled this year, the first yearly gain in three.
Inventory in warehouses tracked by the LME fell 702 metric tons, or 14 percent, to 4,284 tons, the exchange said today. That's the biggest decline since July 14. Stockpiles have plunged 88 percent this year and are equal to less than two days of global consumption.
Among other metals for delivery in three months on the LME, copper added $20 to $7,500 a ton. Aluminum fell $3 to $2,592. Lead gained $10 $1,505, tin rose $400 to $9,850 and zinc climbed $24 to $3,785.
Published: October 16 2006 12:36 | Last updated: October 16 2006 12:36
Nickel hit a new record in morning trade in London on Monday with the three month futures price rising to £31,300 a tonne, with global invetories remaining at critically low levels. There are just 2,514 tonnes of nickel in London Metal Exchange warehouses available for delivery to the market.
Tin retreated to $9,875 a tonne after the three-month contract hit $9,950 a tonne on Friday, the highest since 1989, on concerns about supply disrutptions in Indonesia, one of the world?s most producers.
Lead traded at $1,490 a tonne, just short of the record $1,514 level reached on Friday.
Crude prices rallied on Monday amid expectations that a production cut will finally be agreed later this week by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries which has decided to hold an emergency meeting later this week in Qatar.
ICE November Brent rose 42 cents at $59.94 a barrel while Nymex November West Texas Intermediate added 53 cents at $59.10 7.22 a barrel.
Opec members have been debating whether to cut production from the current 28m barrels a day quota or from actual output which was running closer to 27.5m barrels a day inSeptember.
Severl Opec members such as Iran Indonesia and Venezuela are pumping oil below their quota limits and they are underestood not to want to loose market share to their peers by cutting actual output.
?The cuts should come from the quota because Indonesia has not filled its quota,? said Purnomo Yusgiantoro, Indonesia?s mines and energy minister.
The rally ion oil prices bolstered gold and other precious metals. Gold rose to $592.50 a troy ounce from New York?s late quote of $588.80.
Silver rose to 411.67 a troy ounce while platinum was at $1,082 a troy ounce.
: Tin, nickel soar over supply shortfall fears
Tin, nickel soar over supply shortfall fears
Tin and nickel prices have soared to their highest levels in nearly two decades on supply fears.
//-->Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Tin and nickel prices have soared to their highest levels in nearly two decades on supply fears.
Tin jumped to the highest since at least 1989 on a speculation that lower production from Indonesia and Bolivia will create a supply shortfall this year.
Tin for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange soared as high as US$975 (HK$7,605), or 10 percent, to US$10,750 a tonne in late afternoon. That is the highest since at least 1989. Tin has risen 64 percent in the past year.
Nickel reached its highest in at least 19 years as a blockade by strikers at two mines owned by Eramet on the Pacific Island of New Caledonia limited supply of the metal used to make stainless steel.
Nickel for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange rose US$150, or 0.5 percent, to US$30,900 a tonne in early afternoon trade. Earlier it traded at US$31,300, the highest since at least 1987.
Timah, the world's largest tin miner, will cut output this year by 8 percent to 38,407 tonnes, Thobrani Alwi, the Jakarta-based company's president director said Monday. Mines in Bolivia, which account for about 5 percent of world supply, were damaged after fatal clashes between miners, local newspaper El Diario reported last week.
Eramet's New Caledonia smelter, the world's largest plant producing ferronickel, an alloy used by stainless- steel makers, needs ore from the mines to replenish inventory, said Pierre Alla, chief executive officer of the French company's nickel unit. Earlier this month, the International Nickel Study Group forecast global demand will exceed production.
Crude oil was little changed as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries lowered its global consumption forecast and traders speculated it may fail to cut production to lift prices.
OPEC Monday trimmed its forecast for global demand and cut an estimate of the need for its own crude oil. OPEC will meet in Qatar Thursday to discuss reducing production by one million barrels a day, Qatar Oil Minister Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah said.
"It's a well-supplied market right now and there are a lot of questions about growth," said Jason Schenker, an economist with Wachovia Corp.
Crude oil for November delivery rose 4 US cents to US$58.61 a barrel at 10.29am on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures have dropped 3.9 percent so far this month.
Brent crude oil for November delivery fell 18 US cents to US$59.34 a barrel in London. December Brent fell 25 cents to US$60.43.
Meanwhile, Treasury bond investors, who forecast lower interest rates two weeks ago, now see no chance the Federal Reserve will reduce borrowing costs until late next year as policy makers continue to warn about the threat of inflation.
Interest-rate futures show traders expect the Fed to keep its target for overnight loans between banks at 5.25 percent. Fed funds futures traded on the Chicago Board of Trade projected 20 percent odds of a cut two weeks ago. Last month, the contracts suggested a 50 percent chance for lower rates.
Treasuries posted their biggest weekly decline in four months after Fed chairman Ben Bernanke and other policymakers suggested they are unlikely to cut borrowing costs.
"The bond market was anticipating a bigger slowdown," said Joe Balestrino, who helps manage US$22 billion in Pittsburgh at Federated Investors.
"Bernanke and company have clearly sent a message that the market has misinterpreted what they think," he added.
Du hast natürlich Recht, dass es ohne Rücksetzer nicht gut nach oben geht. Aber warum verkaufst Du denn und machst es nicht so wie Kostolany gesagt hat und legst dich schlafen. Oder: einfach mal auch seine Stopps nachziehen.