Research

Forecasts and market analysis based on price assessments from Fastmarkets MB and Fastmarkets AMM

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Base Metals

17 September 2019 Issue

  • Metals prices tread water, waiting for developments on trade talks

    Free

    20 September 2019

    The markets remain in limbo this morning, Friday September 20, while they wait for any news from the initial US-China trade talks that are underway between deputy negotiators in the US.

  • Metals wait for developments on oil, FOMC stance and trade talks

    Free

    18 September 2019

    The markets were in limbo this morning, Wednesday September 18, while they wait for developments on trade talks, the direction of oil prices and the outcome of this evening’s US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting and rate decision.

  • Aluminium: Rally restricted by downtrend

    17 September 2019

    LME aluminium prices have taken another step higher amid short-covering, and there could be plenty more of that to come given the size of the remaining net speculative short position. But this rebound has occurred within the still-dominant downtrend that has capped this market since the beginning of the year. That will again limit the upside, unless a US-China trade deal is done to complete reboot sentiment.

  • Base metals investment analysis: Oil price shock halts base metals short-covering

    17 September 2019

    Concerns about higher oil prices and the fallout from the attacks on Saudi Arabia at the weekend have halted the short-covering rally the base metals complex had been experiencing this month by undermining the recent fragile recovery in optimism over a possible US-China trade deal.

  • Copper: More room on the upside

    17 September 2019

    Copper prices have rebounded strongly so far this month, driven by a bout of short-covering as macro sentiment turns more positive and fundamental indicators remain healthy. The recent break of key resistance levels could attract further momentum-based buying and we think there is plenty of room for prices on the upside as the market is still positioned in a too-bearish fashion after the weak price performance on macro fears in H1.

  • Demand Indicators: 17 September 2019

    17 September 2019

    Demand indicators for the base metals market

  • Downloadable Base Metals Weekly Data September 17 2019

    17 September 2019

    Downloadable data for week September 17 2019

  • Lead: Moving into a bull market

    17 September 2019

    Lead prices are up 19.6% from their May lows and although they still haven’t convincingly cleared stubborn resistance that has been capping the market around $2,100 per tonne for months, they have essentially complied s with technical analysts’ 20% criteria for a bull market, which in itself could attract more buying interest. The danger is that with exchange inventories so low, there is not much of a cushion should a more optimistic market feel the need to restock.

  • Market Summary: The tide may be turning

    17 September 2019

    The negative effects of the drawn-out US-China trade war have weighed on base metal prices for a long time now, but signs that progress is being made again might be enough to instil some confidence if the oil market shock from the weekend’s incidents in Saudi Arabia proves short lived. A re-focussing on US-China trade optimism could lead to further rounds of speculative short-covering and in the physical market could trigger a switch from destocking to hand-to-mouth buying, or even some light restocking. This scenario has been our base case for Q4 2019 for a while, and we maintain this stance for now.

  • Nickel: Price correction continues

    17 September 2019

    Our forecast for nickel prices to come off from what we considered an overextended spike in early September up to $18,850 per tonne, is proving correct so far. Prices are trading back below $17,000 per tonne as we write, on route to return to the $15,000s by the end of the month in line with our base case.

  • Technical analysis: About turn

    17 September 2019

    The base metals had been looking strong last week but generally hit resistance and are this week pulling back to test support.

  • Tin: Price strength likely to resume

    17 September 2019

    The tin price has come under renewed downward pressure since late last week, which we view as a healthy bout of profit-taking before higher highs are made. The fundamental backdrop of the global refined tin market is much tighter in H2 than in H1, mainly caused by the recent supply response from China. We therefore believe that the rebound in tin prices from their August low should continue in the coming months.

  • Zinc: Looking to retest $2,500 per tonne

    17 September 2019

    A positive technical picture and the suspension of operations again at the Newmont Goldcorp’s Peñasquito mine in Mexico are providing support to zinc prices. We have an immediate target for a retest of the July 2019 high at $2,504 per tonne.