Assessing the risk of a ‘second wave’ of supply loss

In this Metals Watch, we examine the risks to supply posed by high rates of infection among mine workers. We start by looking at what has happened to output at mines so far this year, before assessing where the risks to production are greatest in the months ahead. We conclude by considering the implications for our price forecasts.
Kieran Clancy Assistant Commodities Economist
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Industrial Metals Update

Slower growth in China to drag on prices in 2022

While high power prices and low stocks will support prices in the near term, we think that prices will pull back in the second half of 2022 as Chinese economic activity slows further and supply improves. Drop-In: Neil Shearing will host an online panel of our senior economists to answer your questions and update on macro and markets this Thursday, 13th January (11:00 ET/16:00 GMT). Register for the latest on everything from Omicron to the Fed to our key calls for 2022. Registration here.

13 January 2022

Metals Data Response

Global Steel Production (Nov.)

Global steel production contracted in y/y terms in November, mainly owing to depressed output in China. Although China’s power rationing came to an end last month, there are no signs of an upturn in steel supply. Given our expectation that construction-related steel demand will remain subdued, a sustained rebound in China’s steel production appears unlikely in the coming months.

22 December 2021

Industrial Metals Update

Drawdown in stocks to reverse in 2022

Exchange stocks of base metals have fallen this year, as supply was interrupted by power rationing in China as well as the ongoing effects of COVID-19. However, now that power restrictions have been lifted, and with Chinese construction activity continuing to weaken, we expect stocks to start to build which should weigh on prices in the coming year.

21 December 2021

More from Kieran Clancy

Industrial Metals Update

Detailed China trade data highlight supply risks

The breakdown of China’s trade data for May shows that the recovery in imports of scrap and tin ore has hit a few stumbling blocks. Were these issues to persist, they could help to put a floor under prices even if, as we expect, the decline in demand for refined metal in China continues.

1 July 2021

Energy Update

Restocking boost to LNG prices to fade soon

After rising (and falling) sharply at the start of the year, Asia LNG prices have started to push higher again recently. This latest rise seems to have been driven by a rebuilding of stocks, which should run its course over the coming months. That said, the outlook for spot Asia LNG prices further ahead remains bright.

9 June 2021

Energy Data Response

US Weekly Petroleum Status Report

US commercial crude stocks declined for the fifth week in a row, owing to the robust economic recovery and a further increase in inputs to refineries. With demand set to rise further, and few signs of a rebound in domestic production, crude stocks should continue to fall in the weeks ahead.

3 June 2021
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