Issue 45 - 25.03.2019
25.03.2019

Italy joins China's Belt and Road Initiative

Resisting pressure fr om Washington and Brussels, Italy on Saturday became the first G7 country to join China's controversial Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Rome, endorsing the global infrastructure-building scheme.

Conte and Xi shook hands after 29 separate sections of the MoU were signed by members of both governments.

As with previous MoUs, Saturday's accords were wide-ranging, covering cooperation in the banking sector, a partnership between a Chinese construction company and Italian ports and the export of fruit from the Mediterannean country to China. 

The agreements also hinted at collaboration between media outlets, as well as in the spheres of science and technology, and promised the return of hundreds of Chinese cultural objects currently in Italy. 

The MoU is non-binding. But by opening the door to greater Sino-Italian cooperation, it threatens to deepen rifts between Rome and its traditional allies and within Italy's fragmented coalition government. 

Luigi di Maio, Italy's minister for economic development and one of the country's two deputy prime ministers, told reporters after the signing that Rome's goal was to "rebalance an imbalance" in Sino-Italian trade. 

"There is a lot of 'Made in China' coming into Italy and too little 'Made in Italy' that goes into China," Di Maio said, adding that Italy now hopes for "a substantial and gradual increase of exports" to "balance out the trade imbalances". 

Announced in 2013 as an ambitious plan to build a "belt" of overland corridors and a "road" of maritime shipping lanes spanning Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Europe, the BRI has evolved to encompass other regions, as well as digital infrastructure and even cultural exchanges.

Also known as "The New Silk Road", it promises to strengthen China's trade and investment links with the rest of the world and cement its position as a major global economic power.

BRI projects are financed by Chinese state-owned enterprises that offer participating countries inexpensive loans and credit. Analysts at Morgan Stanley predict China's investments in BRI countries could reach $1.3 trillion by 2027.

The scheme has drawn fire from critics who accuse Beijing of engaging in so-called "debt-trap diplomacy" and potentially masking military endeavours as commercial enterprises.

In 2017, Sri Lanka handed Beijing control of a strategic port after it couldn't pay off its Chinese creditors.

The spectre of unsustainable debt burdens has since prompted some countries to delay, scale back and cancel BRI projects.

Italy's decision to defy the recent backlash and join the BRI comes at a time when the potential to boost Italian exports to China and pump money into crumbling Italian infrastructure is an especially alluring proposition.

Italy has an onerous public debt and it fell into recession at the end of last year. 

"Italy needs investment and resources and China has those to provide," said Erik Jones, professor of European studies and international political economy at Johns Hopkins University's Bologna-based School of Advanced International Studies.

"Italy also needs to underpin and strengthen its business ties with China [and] this agreement will help there," he said. 

Italy is the thirteenth European Union country to sign a memorandum of understanding with China. But it is the first G7 member to do so, throwing the cohesion of the G7 into question.

The landmark move is also a bold statement to Brussels, which engaged in an acrimonious budget battle with Rome last year that forced Italy to pare back its spending plans.

Brussels and Rome have also butted heads over immigration.

"Italy has issues wh ere it is not happy with the EU and the EU is not happy with it, and the only way out of this conundrum is for [Italy] to expand their trade," Einar Tangen, a political and economic affairs commentator, told Al Jazeera.

"Being part of the Belt and Road Initiative would give them a little bit more independence and obviously offer more trade," he said.

Brussels has held a tougher position against the BRI since reports first surfaced of Italy's plans to join the scheme.

The European Commission and the EU's diplomatic arm released a paper last week that branded China a "systemic rival" and threatened to tighten regulations on Chinese investment in Europe.

The paper also included a pledge that EU member states would push for a common approach to 5G security risks in response to concerns raised by the US over Chinese tech giant Huawei.

Some analysts also see Italy's embrace of the BRI as a symbolic gesture of independence ahead of the European Parliament elections this May. 

"This agreement is something the government can hold up as an accomplishment," said Jones. "That is particularly relevant for Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, who tends to have to mediate between the coalition partners more than he is able to take credit for new initiatives."

But joining the BRI could further exacerbate tensions between the two main parties in Italy's coalition government. 

Conte's anti-establishment Five Star Movement has championed stronger ties with China, while its main coalition partner, the Eurosceptic, far-right League, is seeking to maintain good relations with the US, which is embroiled in an ongoing trade war with Beijing.

By Charlotte Mitchell on March 23 2019 for Al-Jazeera.

EURASIA

25.03.2019

Last steel beam linking Russia-China railway bridge put in place

The first cross-border railway bridge between China and Russia over the Amur River has been connected from both sides. The bridge, which will be operational this year, is expected to take bilateral trade to new highs.

The 2,209-meter-long (1.4 miles) structure links Russia’s Far East with China’s northernmost Heilongjiang province. The...

The first cross-border railway bridge between China and Russia over the Amur River has been connected from both sides. The bridge, which will be operational this year, is expected to take bilateral trade to new highs.

The 2,209-meter-long (1.4 miles) structure links Russia’s Far East with China’s northernmost Heilongjiang province. The...

25.03.2019

Russian nuclear-powered container ship may deliver export consignments to China

The Sevmorput container carrier, owned by Russia’s nuclear fleet authority, Atomflot, is the only nuclear-powered cargo vessel, which may be used to deliver export consignments from the Arkhangelsk port to China and to bring fish from the Far East to Russia’s European part, press service of the Arkhangelsk Region’s governor...

The Sevmorput container carrier, owned by Russia’s nuclear fleet authority, Atomflot, is the only nuclear-powered cargo vessel, which may be used to deliver export consignments from the Arkhangelsk port to China and to bring fish from the Far East to Russia’s European part, press service of the Arkhangelsk Region’s governor...

25.03.2019

Belarus-China car maker plans to produce executive-class sedans

Belarus-China car maker BelGee planned to start the production of executive-class sedans, BelGee Acting Director General Gennady Svidersky told local media on Wednesday.

The official said the plant is working on new modifications of cars. It will be the executive-class sedan, the car of the new generation Geely Emgrand GT, he...

Belarus-China car maker BelGee planned to start the production of executive-class sedans, BelGee Acting Director General Gennady Svidersky told local media on Wednesday.

The official said the plant is working on new modifications of cars. It will be the executive-class sedan, the car of the new generation Geely Emgrand GT, he...

25.03.2019

China-Kazakhstan friendship to continue in post-Nazarbayev era

Kazakhstan's first president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, announced his resignation during a televised address to the nation on Tuesday, after nearly three decades in office. He is the last Soviet-era leader to leave office.

The 78-year-old has ruled the largest country in central Asia since it became an independent state after the former...

Kazakhstan's first president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, announced his resignation during a televised address to the nation on Tuesday, after nearly three decades in office. He is the last Soviet-era leader to leave office.

The 78-year-old has ruled the largest country in central Asia since it became an independent state after the former...

Europe

25.03.2019

Chinese, Italian presidents agree to promote greater development of ties

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Italian counterpart, Sergio Mattarella, held talks here Friday, and agreed to jointly push for greater development of the China-Italy comprehensive strategic partnership in the new era.

The two heads of state agreed to guide the direction of bilateral ties from a strategic height and long-term...

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Italian counterpart, Sergio Mattarella, held talks here Friday, and agreed to jointly push for greater development of the China-Italy comprehensive strategic partnership in the new era.

The two heads of state agreed to guide the direction of bilateral ties from a strategic height and long-term...

25.03.2019

Bank of Beijing planning venture with Dutch ING lender

Bank of Beijing Co Ltd said on Friday that it has got the necessary board approvals for the establishment of a joint venture with Netherlands-based ING Bank NV, in which the latter will be the majority partner.

With a total investment of 3 billion yuan ($448 million), the forthcoming joint-venture bank,...

Bank of Beijing Co Ltd said on Friday that it has got the necessary board approvals for the establishment of a joint venture with Netherlands-based ING Bank NV, in which the latter will be the majority partner.

With a total investment of 3 billion yuan ($448 million), the forthcoming joint-venture bank,...

25.03.2019

Shanghai-London Stock Connect to bring big opportunities

The much anticipated Shanghai-London Stock Connect is expected to be launched soon, and will bring huge investment opportunities for not only China and the UK, but also investors all over the world.

The Rt Hon Lord Mayor of the City of London Alderman Peter Estlin discussed this landmark moment in an...

The much anticipated Shanghai-London Stock Connect is expected to be launched soon, and will bring huge investment opportunities for not only China and the UK, but also investors all over the world.

The Rt Hon Lord Mayor of the City of London Alderman Peter Estlin discussed this landmark moment in an...

25.03.2019

UK on the Belt and Road to further prosperity

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is an array of infrastructure products aiming to consolidate China's economic ties with Asian and Eurasian countries with investments of four to eight trillion U.S. dollars. 

While most of the manpower and material resources come from China, it takes into consideration the pursuits of partner...

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is an array of infrastructure products aiming to consolidate China's economic ties with Asian and Eurasian countries with investments of four to eight trillion U.S. dollars. 

While most of the manpower and material resources come from China, it takes into consideration the pursuits of partner...

25.03.2019

Former French PM says 2019 to be "productive year" for France-China ties

Celebrating the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, France and China are expecting high-level visits and other important events this year, making 2019 a "good" and "productive" year for bilateral cooperation, former French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin has told Xinhua.

In an exclusive interview ahead of Chinese President Xi...

Celebrating the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, France and China are expecting high-level visits and other important events this year, making 2019 a "good" and "productive" year for bilateral cooperation, former French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin has told Xinhua.

In an exclusive interview ahead of Chinese President Xi...

China, Pacific

25.03.2019

Business leaders, experts defend China's Belt and Road initiative at Beijing forum

Business leaders and experts delivered a stout defence of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) on Saturday (March 23) as Beijing welcomed Italy into the fold of its mega development strategy. 

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature foreign policy and development strategy has often been criticised as a form of “debt trap...

Business leaders and experts delivered a stout defence of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) on Saturday (March 23) as Beijing welcomed Italy into the fold of its mega development strategy. 

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature foreign policy and development strategy has often been criticised as a form of “debt trap...

25.03.2019

Private equity, venture capital deals in China’s communication sector hit new record

A total of 1,883 private equity and venture capital deals were completed in China’s telecommunications, media and technology industry in the second half of last year, accounting for 46 percent of total PE/VC investment, a record number since 2016, according to a PwC report.

The report showed that 1,290 PE/VC deals...

A total of 1,883 private equity and venture capital deals were completed in China’s telecommunications, media and technology industry in the second half of last year, accounting for 46 percent of total PE/VC investment, a record number since 2016, according to a PwC report.

The report showed that 1,290 PE/VC deals...

25.03.2019

China accelerates rail-sea transit logistics

Although based in the inland province of Henan in central China, Huang Xiaokang feels that a sea port has been set up at the doorstep of his company.

Huang is the general manager of a logistics company affiliated to YTO Group Corporation, a leading agricultural machinery manufacturer headquartered in Henan's Luoyang...

Although based in the inland province of Henan in central China, Huang Xiaokang feels that a sea port has been set up at the doorstep of his company.

Huang is the general manager of a logistics company affiliated to YTO Group Corporation, a leading agricultural machinery manufacturer headquartered in Henan's Luoyang...

25.03.2019

China's real, nominal EERs strengthen for 3 months: BIS

China's real and nominal effective exchange rates (EER) strengthened for three consecutive months up to February this year, data from the Bank for International Settlement (BIS) showed.

According to BIS's monthly data, the real EER has climbed 2 percent to 126.32 points, while the nominal EER has gone up 0.96 percent...

China's real and nominal effective exchange rates (EER) strengthened for three consecutive months up to February this year, data from the Bank for International Settlement (BIS) showed.

According to BIS's monthly data, the real EER has climbed 2 percent to 126.32 points, while the nominal EER has gone up 0.96 percent...

25.03.2019

Chinese economy maintains stable progress with opportunities ahead

China's economy will maintain resilience and progress partly due to further opening up, a stronger domestic market and booming high-tech industries, a senior official has said.

Ning Jizhe, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission, made the remarks in his article published in the latest issue of Secretary Work, a...

China's economy will maintain resilience and progress partly due to further opening up, a stronger domestic market and booming high-tech industries, a senior official has said.

Ning Jizhe, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission, made the remarks in his article published in the latest issue of Secretary Work, a...

25.03.2019

China’s national economy moves closer to high-income status

China will take a solid step toward becoming a high-income country this year, creating more space to deepen reform and expand opening-up, economists said on Friday.

A more balanced growth pattern will help the world's second-largest economy pass the "middle-income trap", with consumption and high-tech manufacturing leading growth, they said at...

China will take a solid step toward becoming a high-income country this year, creating more space to deepen reform and expand opening-up, economists said on Friday.

A more balanced growth pattern will help the world's second-largest economy pass the "middle-income trap", with consumption and high-tech manufacturing leading growth, they said at...

25.03.2019

China’s business class faith in entrepreneurship rebounds

Business confidence among Chinese entrepreneurs rebounded in the first quarter of the year after falling for two quarters consecutively, according to a central bank survey.

The entrepreneur confidence index climbed to 69.2 from 67.8 in the fourth quarter of 2018. But the Q1 index dropped by 5.1 percentage points from the...

Business confidence among Chinese entrepreneurs rebounded in the first quarter of the year after falling for two quarters consecutively, according to a central bank survey.

The entrepreneur confidence index climbed to 69.2 from 67.8 in the fourth quarter of 2018. But the Q1 index dropped by 5.1 percentage points from the...

25.03.2019

China unveils first rare earth, tungsten output quotas for 2019

China has announced the first batch of rare earth and tungsten mining output quotas for this year.

The first batch of quota for rare earths totals 60,000 tonnes, about half the quota set for 2018, according to a circular jointly issued by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Ministry of Industry...

China has announced the first batch of rare earth and tungsten mining output quotas for this year.

The first batch of quota for rare earths totals 60,000 tonnes, about half the quota set for 2018, according to a circular jointly issued by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Ministry of Industry...

25.03.2019

China’s Xinjiang ensures loans for spring farming

Financial institutions in Xinjiang have stepped up extending loans to farmers to support spring farming and the rural economy.

The People's Bank of China Urumqi Central Sub-branch re-lent 4.68 billion yuan (698 million U.S. dollars) for spring farming to 37 banks, the branch said.

The bank started re-lending to financial institutions in...

Financial institutions in Xinjiang have stepped up extending loans to farmers to support spring farming and the rural economy.

The People's Bank of China Urumqi Central Sub-branch re-lent 4.68 billion yuan (698 million U.S. dollars) for spring farming to 37 banks, the branch said.

The bank started re-lending to financial institutions in...

25.03.2019

Foreign investment law reaffirms China's commitment to IP protection

China has stepped up its protection of intellectual property (IP) rights over the past years, and the newly passed foreign investment law indicates that it is willing to keep up with the efforts, said a renowned economist.

Yukon Huang is a senior fellow with the Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment...

China has stepped up its protection of intellectual property (IP) rights over the past years, and the newly passed foreign investment law indicates that it is willing to keep up with the efforts, said a renowned economist.

Yukon Huang is a senior fellow with the Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment...

25.03.2019

Chinese banks post forex settlement deficit in Feb

China's commercial banks saw a net forex settlement deficit of 101.3 billion yuan, or 15 billion U.S. dollars, in February, the country's forex regulator said Monday.

This reversed a surplus of 81.8 billion yuan reported in January, the first surplus in seven months, according to the State Administration of Foreign Exchange...

China's commercial banks saw a net forex settlement deficit of 101.3 billion yuan, or 15 billion U.S. dollars, in February, the country's forex regulator said Monday.

This reversed a surplus of 81.8 billion yuan reported in January, the first surplus in seven months, according to the State Administration of Foreign Exchange...

25.03.2019

China's fiscal revenue up 7 pct in first 2 months

China's fiscal revenue rose 7 percent year-on-year to 3.91 trillion yuan (about 582.6 billion U.S. dollars) in the first two months of 2019, official data showed Monday.

The central government collected about 1.94 trillion yuan in fiscal revenue during the period, up 6.6 percent year on year, while local governments saw...

China's fiscal revenue rose 7 percent year-on-year to 3.91 trillion yuan (about 582.6 billion U.S. dollars) in the first two months of 2019, official data showed Monday.

The central government collected about 1.94 trillion yuan in fiscal revenue during the period, up 6.6 percent year on year, while local governments saw...

25.03.2019

Chinese shares close higher Monday

Chinese stocks closed higher on Monday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index up 2.47 percent, at 3,096.42 points.

The Shenzhen Component Index closed 3.07 percent higher at 9,843.43 points, Xinhua reports.

The ChiNext Index, China's NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, gained 2.67 percent to close at 1,707.06 points Monday.

The...

Chinese stocks closed higher on Monday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index up 2.47 percent, at 3,096.42 points.

The Shenzhen Component Index closed 3.07 percent higher at 9,843.43 points, Xinhua reports.

The ChiNext Index, China's NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, gained 2.67 percent to close at 1,707.06 points Monday.

The ChiNext Index, together...

25.03.2019

New cross-border bridge to boost China-Vietnam trade

The Second Beilun River Bridge opened to traffic on March 19. It connects the Chinese city of Dongxing with the Vietnamese city of Mong Cai, two important trade cities along the border between the two countries.

The new bridge spans 549 meters across the border river between China and Vietnam and...

The Second Beilun River Bridge opened to traffic on March 19. It connects the Chinese city of Dongxing with the Vietnamese city of Mong Cai, two important trade cities along the border between the two countries.

The new bridge spans 549 meters across the border river between China and Vietnam and...

South Asia, Middle East

25.03.2019

Bank of China opens its first branch in India to boost financial cooperation

The Reserve Bank of India had granted the license to the bank to operate in India in June 2018. Both countries are working towards increased economic cooperation as India is a member state of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

The 106-year-old Bank of China (BoC) has become the second Chinese bank, after the Industrial...

The Reserve Bank of India had granted the license to the bank to operate in India in June 2018. Both countries are working towards increased economic cooperation as India is a member state of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

The 106-year-old Bank of China (BoC) has become the second Chinese bank, after the Industrial...

25.03.2019

Pakistan to receive loan worth $2.1bn from China

The Ministry of Finance has announced that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) will receive a 15 billion yuan loan, equivalent to $2.1bn, from China by Monday.

The ministry's adviser and spokesperson Dr Khaqan Najeeb Khan said that "all procedural formalities" for the transfer of the loan being provided to Pakistan...

The Ministry of Finance has announced that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) will receive a 15 billion yuan loan, equivalent to $2.1bn, from China by Monday.

The ministry's adviser and spokesperson Dr Khaqan Najeeb Khan said that "all procedural formalities" for the transfer of the loan being provided to Pakistan...

25.03.2019

Belt and Road puts Egypt at forefront of China's new renewable energy projects

Step by step, China aims to reach a clean, pollution-free society and set a plan several years ago for a fully clean environment by 2020, by expanding the use of new and renewable energy and eliminating the use of coal to generate electricity.

The continent of Africa, led by Egypt, Ethiopia,...

Step by step, China aims to reach a clean, pollution-free society and set a plan several years ago for a fully clean environment by 2020, by expanding the use of new and renewable energy and eliminating the use of coal to generate electricity.

The continent of Africa, led by Egypt, Ethiopia,...

25.03.2019

Israeli chip exports to China jump 80 pct to 2.6 bln USD in 2018: report

Israel's computer chip exports to China jumped 80 percent in 2018 to 2.6 billion US dollars, the Israel Export Institute (IEI) said Tuesday.

According to IEI's annual developments and trends report, the exceptional increase in chip exports was the main reason of a 50-percent jump in Israeli exports to China in...

Israel's computer chip exports to China jumped 80 percent in 2018 to 2.6 billion US dollars, the Israel Export Institute (IEI) said Tuesday.

According to IEI's annual developments and trends report, the exceptional increase in chip exports was the main reason of a 50-percent jump in Israeli exports to China in...

Africa, Americas

25.03.2019

Chinese yuan to firm against U.S. dollar on dovish Fed, expected trade deal

The Chinese yuan (CNY) would appreciate against the U.S. dollar (USD) in the following 12 months due to a more dovish U.S. Federal Reserve and anticipated trade deal between the United States and China, according to the latest research note by Swiss multinational investment bank UBS AG.

UBS, in the research...

The Chinese yuan (CNY) would appreciate against the U.S. dollar (USD) in the following 12 months due to a more dovish U.S. Federal Reserve and anticipated trade deal between the United States and China, according to the latest research note by Swiss multinational investment bank UBS AG.

UBS, in the research...

25.03.2019

Bank of America branch approved for RMB interest rate swaps

The Bank of America, N. A. Shanghai Branch (BANA Shanghai) has been approved to engage in RMB interest rate swaps (IRS) after becoming the first US non-body corporate member of Shanghai Clearing House.

Shanghai Clearing House said the move implements measures introduced by the People's Bank of China, the country's central...

The Bank of America, N. A. Shanghai Branch (BANA Shanghai) has been approved to engage in RMB interest rate swaps (IRS) after becoming the first US non-body corporate member of Shanghai Clearing House.

Shanghai Clearing House said the move implements measures introduced by the People's Bank of China, the country's central...

25.03.2019

China's top legislator meets U.S. delegation

Li Zhanshu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), on Friday met with a delegation of the U.S.-China Working Group from the U.S. Congress in Beijing.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the United States. Li said that...

Li Zhanshu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), on Friday met with a delegation of the U.S.-China Working Group from the U.S. Congress in Beijing.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the United States. Li said that...

Markets

25.03.2019

US dollar resumes downward spiral on bad US economy signals

The Australian dollar hit a two-week high and led a recovery against the U.S. currency on Monday as caution about the U.S. economy and expectations for an accommodative Federal Reserve meeting this week kept the greenback on the back foot.

The euro was also a beneficiary from the weaker dollar, adding...

The Australian dollar hit a two-week high and led a recovery against the U.S. currency on Monday as caution about the U.S. economy and expectations for an accommodative Federal Reserve meeting this week kept the greenback on the back foot.

The euro was also a beneficiary from the weaker dollar, adding...

25.03.2019

Brent benchmark kept even as OPEC+ sticks to commitments, US fracking glut falters

Oil prices were mixed on Monday, weighed by concerns that an economic downturn may dent fuel consumption, but supported by supply cuts led by producer group OPEC and U.S. sanctions against Iran and Venezuela.

Brent crude oil futures were at $67.24 per barrel at 0737 GMT, up 8 cents fr om...

Oil prices were mixed on Monday, weighed by concerns that an economic downturn may dent fuel consumption, but supported by supply cuts led by producer group OPEC and U.S. sanctions against Iran and Venezuela.

Brent crude oil futures were at $67.24 per barrel at 0737 GMT, up 8 cents fr om...

25.03.2019

LNG glut hits North Sea region natural gas prices

British wholesale gas prices slipped on Monday despite a forecast of undersupply, as flows were expected to remain robust in the absence of outages, boosted by a barrage of liquefied natural gas (LNG) deliveries this week.

The within-day gas price fell 0.05 pence to 38.10 p/therm by 0905 GMT.

The day-ahead price...

British wholesale gas prices slipped on Monday despite a forecast of undersupply, as flows were expected to remain robust in the absence of outages, boosted by a barrage of liquefied natural gas (LNG) deliveries this week.

The within-day gas price fell 0.05 pence to 38.10 p/therm by 0905 GMT.

The day-ahead price...

25.03.2019

Gold, other precious metals continue spark against retreating US dollar

Palladium surged to a record high on Monday, boosted by ongoing supply shortages for the autocatalyst metal, while gold rose as expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve will pursue an accommodative monetary policy this year weighed on the dollar.

Spot palladium scaled an all-time peak of $1,577 an ounce...

Palladium surged to a record high on Monday, boosted by ongoing supply shortages for the autocatalyst metal, while gold rose as expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve will pursue an accommodative monetary policy this year weighed on the dollar.

Spot palladium scaled an all-time peak of $1,577 an ounce and was up...

25.03.2019

Base metal benchmarks led by copper, zinc hover in limbo on dwindling stocks vs. questions over demand

Copper prices held steady on Monday, bolstered by expectations of seasonally strong Chinese demand in the second quarter and low stocks, while concerns about a global economic slowdown due to trade tensions capped gains.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange traded up 0.4 percent at $6,458 a tonne in official...

Copper prices held steady on Monday, bolstered by expectations of seasonally strong Chinese demand in the second quarter and low stocks, while concerns about a global economic slowdown due to trade tensions capped gains.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange traded up 0.4 percent at $6,458 a tonne in official...

25.03.2019

Wheat, maize benchmarks at crossroads on weather, trade

Chicago wheat futures turned lower on Monday as last week's short-covering rally faltered in the face of ample supplies, while corn was little changed as investors assessed shifting weather forecasts for spring planting. Soybeans were also nearly flat as the oilseed market awaited a clearer picture of U.S. planting prospects...

Chicago wheat futures turned lower on Monday as last week's short-covering rally faltered in the face of ample supplies, while corn was little changed as investors assessed shifting weather forecasts for spring planting. Soybeans were also nearly flat as the oilseed market awaited a clearer picture of U.S. planting prospects...

25.03.2019

Investors get bearish on greenback, euro

The dollar slid against the safe-haven Japanese yen on Friday as dismal U.S. manufacturing data fueled worries about the wider economy, and bond yields signaled growing fears of a recession.

The dollar, however, rose against the euro as a much weaker-than-expected German manufacturing survey raised concerns that Europe’s powerhouse economy may...

The dollar slid against the safe-haven Japanese yen on Friday as dismal U.S. manufacturing data fueled worries about the wider economy, and bond yields signaled growing fears of a recession.

The dollar, however, rose against the euro as a much weaker-than-expected German manufacturing survey raised concerns that Europe’s powerhouse economy may...

25.03.2019

Oil benchmarks resume retreat on withering demand assumptions

Oil fell about 2 percent on Friday, slipping further from 2019 highs as focus shifted to a lack of progress in U.S.-China trade talks and as grim manufacturing data from Germany and the U.S. reignited fears of a slowdown in the global economy and oil demand.

Wall Street’s main indexes tumbled...

Oil fell about 2 percent on Friday, slipping further from 2019 highs as focus shifted to a lack of progress in U.S.-China trade talks and as grim manufacturing data from Germany and the U.S. reignited fears of a slowdown in the global economy and oil demand.

Wall Street’s main indexes tumbled...

25.03.2019

North Sea natural gas prices down as LNG glut resumes

British wholesale gas prices were mostly lower on Friday morning due to strong supply, especially from liquefied natural gas.

The within-day gas price was down 0.45 pence at 36.60 p/therm at 0942 GMT.

April gas declined by 0.50 pence to 36.50 p/therm

Strong supplies, especially from expected arrivals of liquefied natural gas (LNG)...

British wholesale gas prices were mostly lower on Friday morning due to strong supply, especially from liquefied natural gas.

The within-day gas price was down 0.45 pence at 36.60 p/therm at 0942 GMT.

April gas declined by 0.50 pence to 36.50 p/therm

Strong supplies, especially from expected arrivals of liquefied natural gas (LNG)...

25.03.2019

Bulls return to bullion on cash, paper woes, other precious metals down

Gold edged higher on Friday as weak economic data from the euro zone exacerbated fears of a global slowdown, weighing on risk sentiment and putting bullion on track for its best week in nearly two months.

Spot gold was up about 0.4 percent at $1,314.56 per ounce by 10 a.m. EDT...

Gold edged higher on Friday as weak economic data from the euro zone exacerbated fears of a global slowdown, weighing on risk sentiment and putting bullion on track for its best week in nearly two months.

Spot gold was up about 0.4 percent at $1,314.56 per ounce by 10 a.m. EDT...

25.03.2019

Base metals’ benchmarks drop as attention returns from politics to economics

Copper prices fell on Friday as weak European and U.S. factory data spread gloom about the global economic outlook and strengthened the dollar.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) closed 1.7 percent lower at $6,312 a tonne, slipping from an eight-month high of $6,555.50 on Thursday.

It logged its biggest...

Copper prices fell on Friday as weak European and U.S. factory data spread gloom about the global economic outlook and strengthened the dollar.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) closed 1.7 percent lower at $6,312 a tonne, slipping from an eight-month high of $6,555.50 on Thursday.

It logged its biggest...

25.03.2019

Grain benchmarks firm as floods cap US belts

A massive supply of grains has shielded the futures markets from the impact of flooding in the U.S. Midwest so far, with traders largely shrugging off this week’s reports of destroyed storage bins, swamped elevators and questions about if waters will recede in time for planting.

The problem is grain glut...

A massive supply of grains has shielded the futures markets from the impact of flooding in the U.S. Midwest so far, with traders largely shrugging off this week’s reports of destroyed storage bins, swamped elevators and questions about if waters will recede in time for planting.

The problem is grain glut...