Aluminium Surges After Rusal Sanctions
Commodities ended lower on Friday, but higher for most over the week.
Aluminium, oil (see separate story), copper, lead, zinc and iron ore all rose on Friday and last week.
Gold futures lost ground over the week, down for a second day in a row on Friday as yields on US Treasury bonds hit four year highs on Friday.
Comex June gold lost $US10.50, or 0.8%, to settle at $US1,338.30 an ounce.
For the week, gold futures fell by roughly 0.7%, the loss in three weeks.
Silver also fell after trying to play catch-up to gold for much of the week.
Comex May silver lost 7.6 cents, or 0.4%, to $US17.163 an ounce, a 3% gain for the week.
Elsewhere in the US metals market, Comex May copper futures rose 0.1% to $US3.135 a pound, to be up around 2.1% higher for the week.
Aluminium and nickel prices this week hit multi-year highs last week (aluminium for a second week in a row), on concerns that sanctions against Russian companies such as aluminium producer Rusal and possibly against nickel producer Norilsk Nickel .
Aluminium prices are up 23% since Rusal sanctions earlier this month. Nickel futures reversed some of the losses as it became clearer that Norilsk Nickel may not be included in the sanctions.
LME three month aluminium closed 0.6% down at $US2,469 a tonne on Friday after hitting the seven year high on Thursday of $US2,718 a tonne on Thursday.
LME nickel ended 1.6% down at $US14,830 a tonne after touching a three-year high of $16,690 on Thursday. It was still up more than 5% last week.
LME three months copper ended up 0.1% on Friday at $US6,992 a tonne, zinc rose 0.3% to $US3,232, lead was up 1.2% at $US2,365 and tin finished with a 1.3% gain at $US21,725.
The Metal Bulletin 62% Fe Iron Ore Index: price fell to $US67.09 per tonne cfr Qingdao, down by $US1.39 a tonne. That was still higher than the previous Friday’s close of $US64.96.
Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.
At the AFR he was a finance writer, Finance Editor, News Editor and Chief of Staff. At the Nine Network he was supervising producer of Business Sunday for more than 16 years. He has also written for other online and analogue print publications here and overseas.