Thursday, February 23, 2006

CRB commodities index

The CRB commodities index is again nearing its 50 weeks moving average which proved itself to be a good buying opportunity the last couple of years.

Click on the chart below to enlarge:

CRB commodities index

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Crude Oil Futures - NYMEX

Click on chart to enlarge
Crude oil chart

Palladium Futures

Palladium is a chemical element with symbol Pd and atomic number 46. A rare silver-white transition metal of the platinum group, palladium resembles platinum chemically and is extracted from some copper and nickel ores.

Palladium is the other major metal of the platinum group. It is mined with platinum, and resembles it in many respects, yet there are important differences between the two metals. Palladium is also produced as a by-product of nickel mining. Russia supplies about 67% of production, South Africa, 23%; and North America, 8%. Annual production runs approximately 8.1 million ounces.

Automotive catalysts are the largest consuming sector, accounting for 63% of demand. Electronic equipment accounts for 21%; dental alloys, 12%; and jewelry, 4%.

Trading Unit: 100 troy ounces.

Palladium Futures price(PA, NYMEX) long term log chart

Palladium Futures price (PA, NYMEX) long term linear chart

Platinum Futures

Platinum is a chemical element in the periodic table that has the symbol Pt and atomic number 78. A heavy, malleable, ductile, precious, grey-white transition metal, platinum is resistant to corrosion and occurs in some nickel and copper ores along with some native deposits.

Platinum is the principal metal of the six-metal group that bears its name; the other platinum group metals are palladium, rhodium, ruthenium, osmium, and iridium. All possess unique chemical and physical qualities that make them vital industrial materials.

Jewelry creates the largest demand for platinum, accounting for 51%. Automotive catalysts take 29% and chemical and petroleum refining catalysts, 13%.

Platinum is used in the computer industry and in other high-tech electronic applications since it is an excellent conductor of electricity, does not corrode, and has a low reactivity with other metals. This sector accounts for about 7% of consumption.

Platinum is among the world's scarcest metals; new mine production totals approximately only 5 million troy ounces a year. In contrast, gold mine production runs approximately 82 million ounces a year, and silver production is approximately 547 million ounces.

Supplies of platinum are concentrated in South Africa, which accounts for approximately 80% of supply; Russia, 11%; and North America, 6%.

Because of the metal's importance as an industrial material, its relatively low production, and concentration among a few suppliers, prices can be volatile. For this reason, it is often considered attractive to investors.

Trading Unit 50 troy ounces.

Platinum Futures price (NYMEX: PL) , long term Chart

Platinum Futures (NYMEX: PL) , long term price Chart

Gold & Silver spot charts

Aluminum Futures

Aluminum is the chemical element in the periodic table that has the symbol Al and atomic number 13. It is a silvery and ductile member of the poor metal group of chemical elements.
Aluminum is a symbol of the 21st century economy. The lightweight, corrosion resistant metal is ubiquitous, finding use in aerospace applications, as a construction material, in packaging, automobiles, railroad cars, and thousands of other applications.

Transportation is the largest single consuming sector, absorbing approximately 30% of U.S. production. Packaging and aluminum containers – all those cans – take another 20%; building and construction absorbs 10%. The high voltage electric transmission lines that are strung from one end of the nation to the other are often made of aluminum.

Aluminum scrap is among the most easily recycled metal available today. In the United States, the recycling of aluminum cans is a billion-dollar business by itself. Practically all beverage containers made in the United States today are aluminum and two-thirds are recycled. The turnaround between the time a can is tossed into a recycling bin, re-smelted, fabricated and back on a store shelf is often only 60 days.

Aluminum production is dependent on a large supply of uninterrupted electric power and energy is a key cost component.

The Exchange's COMEX Division aluminum futures and options contracts provide price transparency to the U.S. aluminum market, valued at about $35 billion per year in products and exports.

Trading Unit 44,000 pounds of aluminum.

Aluminum (AL, COMEX) chart

Copper Futures (Comex : HG )

Copper is a chemical element in the periodic table that has the symbol Cu and atomic number 29. Copper, one of the oldest commodities known to man, is a product with fortunes which directly reflect the state of the world economy. It is the world's third most widely used metal, after iron and aluminum, and is primarily used in highly cyclical industries such as construction and industrial machinery manufacturing. Profitable extraction of the metal depends on cost-efficient high-volume mining techniques, and supply is sensitive to the political situation particularly in those countries where copper mining is a government-controlled enterprise.

Copper was first worked about 7,000 years ago. Its softness, color, and presence in nature enabled it to be easily mined and fashioned into primitive utensils, tools, and weapons. Five thousand years ago, man learned to alloy copper with tin, producing bronze and giving rise to a new age.

Trading Unit 25,000 pounds

Copper Futures , Comex : HG long term price chart

Gold and Silver Charts

Natural Gas Futures

Natural gas accounts for almost a quarter of United States energy consumption, and the NYMEX Division natural gas futures contract is widely used as a national benchmark price. The futures contract trades in units of 10,000 million British thermal units (mmBtu). The price is based on delivery at the Henry Hub in Louisiana, the nexus of 16 intra- and interstate natural gas pipeline systems that draw supplies from the region's prolific gas deposits. The pipelines serve markets throughout the U.S. East Coast, the Gulf Coast, the Midwest, and up to the Canadian border. An options contract and calendar spread options contracts provide additional risk management opportunities.

The NYMEX mini natural gas futures contract, designed for investment portfolios, is the equivalent of 2,500 mmBtu of natural gas, 25% of the size of a standard futures contract. The contract is available for trading on the NYMEX Clear-Port electronic trading platform and clears through the New York Mercantile Exchange clearinghouse.

Natural gas futures charts

Crude oil Futures

Crude oil is the world's most actively traded commodity, and the NYMEX Division light, sweet crude oil futures contract is the world's most liquid forum for crude oil trading, as well as the world's largest-volume futures contract trading on a physical commodity. Because of its excellent liquidity and price transparency, the contract is used as a principal international pricing benchmark. Additional risk management and trading opportunities are offered through options on the futures contract; calendar spread options; crack spread options on the pricing differential of heating oil futures and crude oil futures and gasoline futures and crude oil futures; and average price options.

The contract trades in units of 1,000 barrels, and the delivery point is Cushing, Oklahoma, which is also accessible to the international spot markets via pipelines. The contract provides for delivery of several grades of domestic and internationally traded foreign crudes, and serves the diverse needs of the physical market.

The NYMEX mini crude oil futures contract, designed for investment portfolios, is the equivalent of 500 barrels of crude, 50% of the size of a standard futures contract. The contract is available for trading on the NYMEX Clear-Port electronic trading platform and clears through the New York Mercantile Exchange clearinghouse.

United States Oil Fund Lp (AMEX: USO)  chart

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Copper Futures Chart - COMEX

Click on the chart below to enlarge:

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Monday, February 06, 2006

DBC - More info about the new Commodity ETF

DBC returns are expected to track the performance of the DBLCI. The DBLCI is a rules -based index, comprised of Crude Oil, Heating Oil, Gold, Aluminum, Corn and Wheat. The DBLCI is calculated based on six liquid futures contracts on the commodities comprising the Index. DBC also will generate interest on cash invested in the tracking fund. The indicative value of the DBLCI and DBC will be calculated every 15 seconds and posted to the consolidated tape during the AMEX trading hours.
Read more

Friday, February 03, 2006

Deutsche Bank launches first commodity ETF

BOSTON (MarketWatch) -- Deutsche Bank has introduced the first commodities index fund listed on a U.S. exchange in a move that could signal a major shift for the burgeoning exchange-traded fund business. read more...