The Commodities Category

Could This be the End of the High Cotton Prices?

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Verity Michie, Market Analyst at Mintec.

Last year in June, we asked whether the cotton price recovery continue? The answer was yes, it did, all throughout 2016 and into 2017. But now the real question we need to ask ourselves is how much longer will the price continue to rise? To answer that question, we must understand why prices rose to almost three-year highs in the first place.

Week in Metals: New Steel Imports Probe Will Be Based on National Security

Chinese demand

Another investigation and analysis of cheap steel imports coming to the U.S. was ordered yesterday by President Donald Trump. The Commerce Department will recommend to Trump whether or not to invoke Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, an action that would treat dumped steel imports as a threat to national security. The Week in Metals brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news from our sister site MetalMiner.

US Coal Prices Up on Increased Demand

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Rajiv Joarder, knowledge team leader at Mintec.

Coal prices have been on a steady downward trend since late 2012. But lately, the price of coal in the U.S. has risen by 36% since the beginning of October 2016 and is expected to go up further. So has Donald Trump delivered on his campaign promise to revive the coal industry?

The Week in Metals: Administrative Review Hikes South Korean OCTG Duties

cargo theft

This week, the Department of Commerce announced in a press release that it is exercising its authority under Congress for the first time to address market distortions in the production of foreign merchandise, particularly oil country tubular goods (steel pipes and supporting sections) from the Republic of Korea. Administrative review allows Commerce to calculate dumping margins that “more accurately account for the unfair pricing practices of foreign exporters.” The Week in Metals brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news from our sister site MetalMiner.

Conflict Minerals Update: Perspectives on the SEC’S Latest Move

mining

Last Friday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it is scaling back the more costly parts of its conflict minerals rule. As indicated in Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, companies are required to disclose whether their products contain tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold (3TG) sourced from the eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo, where large shares of mining profits go to various armed rebel groups.

US Cheese Price Bubble Could Be Set To Burst

cheddar

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Michael Liberty, market analyst at Mintec.

We last spoke about cheese prices in December, when the USDA purchased stocks of excess cheddar in November to help boost domestic prices, which resulted in a two-year peak in November. Fast-forward three months, and it’s deja vu; however, this time, the global markets are making their mark.

Commodity Price Uncertainty is the No. 1 Concern for Global Energy Leaders, New Report Finds

wind power

New technologies such as renewable energies and energy efficiency rank high in impact on priorities for global energy leaders, according to the World Energy Council’s eighth and latest annual report, The World Energy Issues Monitor 2017: Exposing the New Energy Realities. The report surveyed more than 1,200 energy leaders (CEOs, ministers, experts) in 95 countries on the issues that keep them “up at night.” One of the biggest, as shown in the upper right quadrant of the chart below, is commodity prices.

The Week in Metals: China Hongqiao May be the Canary in Chinese Aluminum’s Coal Mine

steel

The largest aluminum producer in the People’s Republic, China Hongqiao, suddenly finds itself on the hot seat. China’s traditionally opaque reporting structure has allowed some firms to present their results in a less-than-honest way, and auditor Ernst & Young has flagged its client as needing more review. The Week in Metals brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news from our sister site MetalMiner.

Fake (Commodities) News: Investigate, Investigate, Investigate

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Nick Peksa, market analyst at Mintec.

In the press we have heard a lot about fake news. This is nothing new; this has been around in the form of market rumors for many years. As we all know by now, the commodity and raw materials market can be very sensitive to speculation — one bad report from an unknown source can cause major price upheavals in a market. In order to verify or discount rumors, they need to be approached in a logical manner, i.e., ask or research all of the questions that might influence a market.

The Week in Metals: We Hardly Knew Ye, EPA Clean Power Plan

The Trump Administration sent the EPA Clean Power Plan back for review this week, all but assuring its bureaucratic death. It was never implemented after a court challenge, and the administration will likely scrap it altogether since it has gone or record opposing its limitations on industry. The steel industry, among others, applauded its death. We also report on a recent conference where one of the best-attended seminars was about value-added products offered by successful service centers. The Week in Metals brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news from our sister site MetalMiner.

Spreads: Functional or Fatty?

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Jara Zicha and Nick Peksa, market analysts at Mintec.

Breakfast has been touted for many years as the most important meal of the day; however, times are changing in this fast moving world of marketing and grab-and-go. Today’s buzzwords are “fast and functional,” so what is it that can possibly tick these boxes? Chocolate on bread! A generic chocolate spread contains five key ingredients; sugar, palm oil, hazelnuts, semi-skimmed milk powder (SMP) and cocoa powder. The good news is that the price of spread is dropping. This seems slightly counterintuitive when you consider there have been global price increases in both sugar and palm oil over the last two years. But in reality, sugar and fat are bulking agents and are the cheapest constituents of the product, so the more that can be crammed into a jar, the more money the manufacturer can make.

Spring Time Sees Ammonia Prices Grow

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Verity Michie, market analyst at Mintec.

U.S. ammonia prices have been on a downward trend since the beginning of 2015, reaching a seven-year low in November 2016. So why have ammonia prices suddenly started rising? In order to answer this question, we will need to look at the reasons behind the two-year-long decline.