News

Sat 14 Mar 2020

News

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: any and all views expressed here are simply good faith views and should not be taken as recommendations or inducements to buy or to sell or to othwise trade in any way whatsoever.

GENERAL PRECIOUS METALS:  metals are traded globally priced in US Dollars so prices in pounds sterling, euros and other currencies are subject to dollar exchange to local currency rates. If you are viewing on a desktop or laptop the retrospective London afternoon fixes in pounds sterling should display along the top of every page on this MTD website OR if you are viewing on a phone you should see them in pounds sterling by clicking on the contents bars displayed to the right hand side of the site on your phone.

 

GOLD: CO-19 unknowns led to a jump in the gold price followed by volatility ( possibly the stock markets' drops led to margin calls and some positions were unloaded) but the price looks to have settled somewhat at this time. Fears concerning bank liquidity have not receded and concerns about the US - Iran situation also remain albeit with reduced news media attention. 

Gold market - simple supply of and demand for physical gold is often of less importance to its price than market sentiment; there is something of a chicken and egg situation as the massive paper/electronic ( ie. futures, options, derivatives) trade is an important reflector/driver of the market. This might be supposed to be able to serve political as well as commercial interests.

 

PALLADIUM: the price reached highs and then crashed 30% in US dollars as stock markets' dropped. As with gold possibly margin calls with some positions were unloadeded; plus recent record highs brought increasing noise of platinum being used as a substitute in auto catalysts. The market is volatile with the price around the beginning of January 2020 level. 

UPSIDE PRICE PRESSURES - the major Russian producer Norilsk announced last year that they had received their government's approval to purchase up to 600,000 ounces of palladium from the Russian Central Bank and hold a substantial stock of the metal. That amount of the element affords its controllers tremendous market clout. Whist palladium has been dentistry's most used noble metal it is chiefly utilised for auto catalysts in petrol engine vehicles thus benefitting from the switch away from diesel.  DOWNSIDE PRICE CONSIDERATIONS - any increase in electrical vehicle usage looks to eventually dent demand. Of more immediate concern might be (1) the introduction of thinner catalysts - it's only the surface that acts, (2) an overall slowing of vehicle prduction due to economic conditions, (3) an increase in the supply of metal recycled from scrap encouraged by current prices.

 

PLATINUM: the price has risen. Platinum coud be substituted for palladium in petrol driven vehicles but the re-jigging of vehicle production to facilitate that change could be expensive and cause a decrease in the two metals price differential and thus negate some or all of the aparent advantage of such a change over for vehicle manufacturers. Other than possible hydrogen fuel cell requiremernts there look likely to be new nano-technology applications for platinum.