Gold Sinks to Monthly Bottom, Crude Oil Hits Lowest Level in Two Weeks
Gold Sinks to Monthly Bottom, Crude Oil Hits Lowest Level in Two Weeks
Stocks to watch on the Australian stock exchange at noon on Thursday: AGO - ATLAS IRON - up 4.25 cents, or 4.45 per cent, at 99.75 cents Western Australian iron ore producer Atlas Iron achieved record ...
Western Australian iron ore producer Atlas Iron achieved record shipments in the March quarter but has also been hit by weaker commodity prices. The Pilbara-based miner sold 2.73 million tonnes of iron ore in the three months to March 31, up from 2.7 million tonnes in preceding three months. Managing director Ken Brinsden said the company's Mt Webber expansion project was on track to start shipping iron ore in the current quarter, and will eventually produce six million tonnes a year.
Oil prices sank along with the euro after the European Central Bank forecast that the eurozone would continue to contract next year and only return to growth in 2014.
Gold Resistnace is at 1295
Earlier in the year, I wrote about Oil Search Limited (OSH.AX) and its curious nature. All three are ramping-up production and exploration efforts, and pay a better dividend at a fairer price.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro promised to pay back billions of dollars in government debt to disgruntled importers, after widespread shortages of basic goods helped fuel months of deadly anti-government protests. "We are going to immediately pay back 30 percent of (the total hard currency owed to importers) as a way to move forward on these commitments," Maduro told a gathering of business leaders. Venezuela -- which sits atop the world's largest proven crude oil reserves -- has Latin America's highest inflation rate -- 57 percent. Maduro's heavily state-led government inherited from late leader Hugo Chavez a decade-old system of hard currency controls.
Rising US Yields Push Gold Price towards April Low, $1277 Tipping Point
Newcrest Mining's outgoing head Greg Robinson has been described as having had to save the company last year as it announced he would leave in July. Mr Robinson will leave his $2 million a year salary running Australia's largest gold company on July 4, to be replaced by chief operating officer Sandeep Biswas. The departure of Mr Robinson, plus Newcrest's former chairman Don Mercer, were first flagged before the company's AGM in October. The chief executive leaves after barely three years in the job, after a horror 2013 when the gold price, and Newcrest's share price, plunged.
The European arm of Russian steel giant NLMK has warned the EU against imposing economic sanctions on Russia for its role in the Ukraine crisis, officials said on Wednesday. The European Commission confirmed it had received a letter, which was also sent to Belgium, Denmark, France and Italy where NLMK has operations, spelling out that such sanctions would inevitably lead to heavy job losses. NLMK said all concerned should consider the "possible negative impact" sanctions could have on its European business, on consumers and other partners in Europe, as well as on the European economy as a whole, La Libre Belgique reported, citing the letter. Caroline Marlair, a spokeswoman for NLMK Europe, said separately the "letter is not a threat, it is a letter of prevention ... to make people aware of the possible consequences."
US Dollar Rebound at Risk, Crude Oil and Gold Continue to Sink
NSW households face more utility bill pain, with gas prices set to rocket 17.6 per cent from July 1, adding up to $224 a year to an average bill. The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) revealed the draft proposals on Wednesday, with Australia's growing export market and the carbon tax copping the blame. The rise means an average household will have to stump up an extra $150 to $224 for their annual gas bills from July 1, depending on the supplier. Gas prices in NSW have already increased by about 40 per cent in real terms between 2006 and 2014, piling enormous pressure on some households.
Padbury Mining has again delayed revealing who is funding a $6.5 billion plan to build a major iron ore project in the Western Australia's mid-west. Earlier this month, Western Australian-based Padbury told the share market that it planned to restart the stalled Oakajee port and rail project in the state's mid-west. Padbury has been in a trading suspension since then and it had promised to reveal the financiers to the stock market today. However, just before the start of trade this morning, Padbury released a statement to the ASX again delaying the release of any details until tomorrow morning before the start of trade.
Gas prices across the eastern seaboard are set to rise, with the Australian market to be exposed to the international market for the first time. Australia will triple its gas production in the next few years as key gas projects in Queensland ramp up production. Most of the new gas generated by the Queensland projects will be exported to Asia, a market that pays almost triple the wholesale price of gas compared to what Australia currently pays. The Consumer Utility Advocacy Centre's Martin Jones says it is part of the globalisation of the economy.
Consumer advocates say an anticipated increase in gas prices over the next two years will push at-risk people to the wall. Large gas projects run by companies such as Santos, Shell and Exxon Mobil will gradually come online from later this year. The projects will triple Australia's gas production, but the vast bulk of the gas produced within those projects will be exported to Asia. It means Australia's gas supply in the eastern states will be exposed to the international market for the first time, with some consumer and welfare advocates forecasting domestic gas bills to rise by as much as 25 per cent.
Australia has three large pure-play casino companies listed on the ASX. Crown Resorts Ltd (CWN.AX) owns the Melbourne casino, Perth casino, a casino in London, and a stake in a resort and casino complex in Macau. Echo Entertainment Group Ltd (EGP.AX) owns The Star casino in Sydney, the Treasury Brisbane, Jupiters casino and hotel in Townsville, Gold Coast Convention Centre, and the Townsville Entertainment and Convention Centre.
And investors stand to reap the benefits with Santos' board vowing to increase distributions to shareholders as the substantial cash flows rise. But if Santos is to hit the billion-dollar profit mark there are a number of barriers it will have to cross first. First and foremost, Santos will need to successfully complete construction of its two major projects which are to be the source of the growth. These are PNG LNG, which Santos is completing with partner Oil Search Limited (OSH.AX) and Queensland's GLNG.
Gold Fibonacci Confluence Rests at 1260
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Oil Search says its key PNG liquefied natural gas (LNG) project will deliver its first cargo a few months ahead of schedule. "First LNG sales, which are expected to commence in the next few months, ahead of schedule and within the revised budget, will herald the commencement of a steady, long-term, cash flow stream for Oil Search," managing director Peter Botten said in a statement. Oil Search said it now expects its 2014 production to be at the top end of its previous forecast range, assuming a trouble-free commissioning and ramp-up of the PNG LNG project.
Stocks to watch on the Australian stock exchange at noon on Tuesday: OSH - OIL SEARCH - up 3.00 cents, or 0.35 per cent, at $8.67 Oil Search says its key PNG liquefied natural gas (LNG) project will deliver ...
Venezuela hopes to boost its oil exports to China by more than half to a million barrels a day, President Nicolas Maduro said after talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. In 2013 Venezuela exported an average of 626,000 barrels a day of oil to energy-hungry China. China is Venezuela's main oil customer after the United States. If it is achieved China would become Venezuela's top oil buyer.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, on a tour of Latin America, met his Venezuelan counterpart Elias Jaua to discuss boosting cooperation in a range of areas including energy. The diplomats also talked about enhancing collaboration on industrial development, as well as education, housing and cultural matters, the Venezuelan foreign ministry said. Beijing is an important source of investment capital for Venezuela, which sits atop the world's largest proven crude oil reserves. In September, China pledged to invest more than $20 billion in Venezuelan oil and social cooperation when President Nicolas Maduro paid his first visit to Beijing.
Price & Time: End of Month is Key For Gold
Turkey has agreed "in principle" to increase shipments of natural gas from Russia via the Blue Stream pipeline, its energy minister said on Monday. The two countries will increase capacity through the pipeline, which crosses the Black Sea, from 16 billion cubic metres annually to 19 billion cubic metres, said Energy Minister Taner Yildiz. The minister's comments came ahead of a meeting with Gazprom deputy head Alexander Medvedev scheduled for late Monday. The energy minister said on Friday that Turkey would ask for a discount on the price of the gas it buys from Russia, without specifying an amount.
India's top court ruled Monday that iron ore mining can resume in the mineral-rich state of Goa but capped annual output, ending a ban imposed to stop environmental damage. India was once the third-biggest exporter of the raw material, used to make steel, shipping some 100 million tonnes abroad annually, but a ban was imposed in September 2012 to prevent illegal mining and environmental destruction. Shares in Sesa Sterlite, a unit of Britain-based resource giant Vedanta controlled by billionaire Anil Agarwal, jumped by nearly five percent on the back of the ruling. Sesa has a significant iron ore mining presence in Goa.
Newcrest Mining Limited (NCM.AX) was one of the standout low-cost gold producers for the December quarter and shares could be set to jump on Wednesday if the company can repeat the performance. Newcrest averaged an all-in sustaining cost per ounce of $921 for the December quarter, trumping other gold miners including Silver Lake Resources Limited (SLR.AX), Northern Star Resources Ltd (NST.AX) and Kingsgate Consolidated Limited (KCN.AX). Newcrest's scale and ability to target higher grades of ore for production has helped considerably since the price of gold dropped last year and the company has not had any material negative announcements so far for the March quarter. This could set Newcrest up for a very favourable result for the quarter, especially with the positive movements in the gold price.
US Dollar Nears Technical Crossroads, Crude Oil Flounders Sub-105.00
Japan's trade deficit quadrupled on-year in March to $14 billion, data showed Monday, with a weak yen compounding surging imports as consumers rushed to buy ahead of a rise in sales tax. Japan imported 1.45 trillion yen ($14 billion) worth of goods more than it exported in the month, the finance ministry said, compared with a shortfall of 356.9 billion yen in March 2013. But imports grew a much faster 18.1 percent to 7.83 trillion yen due to higher imports of crude oil and liquefied natural gas as resource-poor Japan raced to plug its energy gap. For the fiscal year to March, Japan logged a record largest trade deficit of 13.75 trillion yen.
EU energy commissioner Guenther Oettinger said Sunday that he sees no danger of Europe's access to Russian gas falling victim to possible economic sanctions in the standoff over Ukraine. "From my many talks with Gazprom, my impression is that our Russian partners will fulfill their contractual obligations and want to supply the gas," Oettinger told the Sunday newspaper Welt am Sonntag. "We are agreed that, in the case of possible economic sanctions -- whether from the European or Russian side -- the gas sector should not have any priority," the commissioner said. Russian gas giant Gazprom accounted for around 25 percent of the European gas market, Oettinger said.
Gold Carves Lower High in April- Bearish Below $1327
Europe's mergers and acquisitions market is rebounding after years in the doldrums, as improving market sentiment is prompting companies to spend cash built up during the financial crisis. A flurry of new deals have been announced in the past month alone, including Numericable's purchase of Vivendi's SFR mobile phone unit in France, the merger of Swiss cement group Holcim and French rival Lafarge and the tie-up of Sopra and Steria to create a new French technology services giant. British companies have also been on the move, with mobile phone giant Vodafone launching a 7.2-billion-euro purchase of Spanish cable operator Ono and private equity firm CVC capital taking a controlling stake in Spanish olive oil producer Deoleo. And German private equity group Triton bought French engineering giant Alstom's boiler and heat transfer equipment unit for 730 million euros ($1 billion).
Energy-dependent Turkey will ask for a discount on the price of the gas it buys from Russia, its energy minister said on Friday, with tension over Ukraine a background factor. "The negotiations and agreements we concluded with Russia give us the right for a price revision in the coming months," Energy Minister Taner Yildiz told reporters in Ankara. "We will convey our demands on this to Russia and Gazprom officials," he added. Gazprom deputy head Alexander Medvedev will hold a meeting with Turkish government officials on Monday for further discussions, according to the minister.
US Dollar Approaching Key Chart Barrier, Crude Oil Aims Above 105.00