Tag Archives: Basic Material (TRBC level 1)

PRECIOUS-Gold prices rose higher due to a weaker dollar | Instant News


    March 1 (Reuters) - Gold edged higher on Monday, recovering
from an eight-month low touched in the previous session, as a
weaker dollar lifted bullion's appeal.
            
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold        rose 0.3% to $1,739.31 per ounce by 0108
GMT, after hitting its lowest since June at $1,716.85 on Friday.
U.S. gold futures        gained 0.4% to $1,736.10.
    * The dollar        slipped from a one-week high hit in the
previous session, making gold cheaper for holders of other
currencies.       
    * Bullion, however, posted its worst monthly fall since
November 2016 in February due to rising U.S. Treasury Yields,
which increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding
gold.       
    * U.S. House of Representatives passed a $1.9 trillion
coronavirus relief package early Saturday.             
    * A global bond market rout saw government bond yields in
the United States, Germany and Australia ending February with
their biggest monthly rises in years.                          
    * The U.S. government on Saturday authorized Johnson &
Johnson's         single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, setting the
vaccine up for additional approvals around the world.
            
    * Speculators decreased their bullish positions in COMEX
gold and silver contracts in the week to Feb. 23, the U.S.
Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday.
            
    * Physical gold demand in India gained momentum last week as
retail buyers and jewellers lapped up bullion at near
eight-month low prices, while Singapore continued to see steady
interest for both gold and silver.         
    * Silver        gained 0.3% to $26.71 an ounce, while
palladium        was up 1% at $2,340.69. Platinum        rose
1.1% to $1,202.00.    
    
DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
0855  Germany  Markit/BME Mfg PMI
0900  EU       Markit Mfg Final PMI
0930  UK       Markit/CIPS Mfg PMI Final
1300  Germany  CPI, HICP Prelim YY
1445  US       Markit Mfg PMI Final
1500  US       ISM Manufacturing PMI

 (Reporting by Shreyansi Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi
Aich)
  

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UPDATE 3-China increases focus on food security in key policy documents | Instant News


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BEIJING, Feb 22 (Reuters) – China will put more pressure on its region to increase grain yields and increase support for its domestic seed industry as it strengthens its focus on food security in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, a major policy document released late. Sunday shows.

The annual rural policy blueprint, known as “No. 1 document ”, placing more emphasis on food security than in previous years, calls on all provinces to increase grain yields during the 2021-2025 period.

Beijing, which has long prioritized food security for its 1.4 billion people, has strengthened its focus on the issue since the pandemic hit major food exporting countries last year and raised concerns about the stability of food supplies.

“The uncertainty and instability of the external situation has increased significantly. Regarding the safety of the grain, we shouldn’t take it lightly for a second, ”Tang Renjian, the agriculture minister, said at a press conference on Monday, noting that China’s population is still increasing.

The document published by the State Council, China’s cabinet, noted that the communist party committee will also assume responsibility for food safety, in addition to local governments.

China will build a “national food security industrial belt”, he added, a plan also outlined during a major economic policy meeting in December.

The belt aims to connect all of the country’s main grain regions, officials said at the time.

The document also reaffirms new priorities for the seed sector, seen as key to food security, urging the faster implementation of major scientific projects in breeding. It urges “industrial applications of biological breeding,” to use a term that includes, among other things, genetically modified crops.

It also calls for stronger protection of intellectual property rights in breeding, and support for leading seed companies to establish commercial breeding systems.

“It is important to select a group of excellent companies to provide priority support,” Zhang Taolin, deputy agriculture minister, said at the briefing.

Shares of seed companies including Beijing Dabeinong Technology Group Co., Shandong Denghai Seed and Winall Hi-tech Seed Co. all gained about 4% on Monday.

China will also stabilize soybean production and develop vegetable oil crops including rapeseed and peanuts, he said, amid tight global vegetable oil supplies, and will diversify imports of its agricultural products.

He also called for building a modern animal husbandry system and protecting the production capacity of pigs.

Despite recent concerns about a spike in disease during winter, Tang said Monday that China’s herd of pigs will recover to 2017 levels in June, reaching numbers not seen since the African swine fever outbreak.

However, he said the country needed to find ways to make the herd more stable and prevent farmers from slaughtering pigs when prices fell.

Reporting by Hallie Gu, Dominique Patton, Judy Hua and Yew Lun Tian; Edited by Richard Pullin and Jacqueline Wong

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2-Eni Italia UPDATE beat expectations in last quarter after ‘year like no other’ | Instant News


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MILAN, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Italian energy group Eni’s fortunes picked up in the last quarter of this year as firmer oil prices after “a year like no other” saw full-year profits fall.

Adjusted net income for the fourth quarter was 0.66 billion euros ($ 798 million), down 88% on the year but beating analyst expectations for a 0.04 billion euro loss.

But for the full year, it reported a loss of 742 million euros compared to a gain of 2.876 billion euros in 2019 after what Eni Chief Executive Claudio Descalzi said was “a year unlike any other in the history of the energy industry”.

The unprecedented drop in demand triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic saw big European rivals Shell and BP as well as big US companies Exxon Mobil and Chevron report heavy losses for the year.

Eni’s shares fell sharply last year, hitting their lowest level in a quarter century as the health pandemic rocked oil markets.

In the fourth quarter production fell 11% to 1,713 million barrels of oil equivalent per day but the company said full-year production was on target.

Like its competitors, Eni has cut its investments to offset the impact of the pandemic and spent 35% less last year at 5 billion euros.

Adjusted cash flow for the year fell to 6.7 billion euros compared with guidelines for 11.5 billion euros on Brent oil prices of $ 60 per barrel.

“By taking advantage of the actions we took, our adjusted cash flow for 2020 … was able to finance our capex, with a surplus of 1.7 billion,” said Descalzi.

The companies, which said they were well-equipped to deal with this year’s uncertain trading environment with liquidity of around 20.4 billion euros, confirmed a 2020 dividend of 0.36 euros per share.

In a note, Royal Bank of Canada said Eni remains one of the more leveraged names among integrated oil companies.

“We see Eni’s aggressive strategy around the energy transition as posing a risk to shareholders from time to time,” he said.

Eni, like other European peers, is cleaning up his business as investors increase pressure on the oil and gas sector to fight climate change.

It will release its new business plan on Friday.

By 1019 GMT Eni’s shares were down 1.1%, while the European oil and gas index was down 0.5%.

($ 1 = 0.8271 euro)

Additional reporting by Stefano Bernabei; Edited by Edmund Blair and David Evans

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PRECIOUS-Gold faces its worst week in 12 as US Treasury yields strengthened | Instant News


    Feb 19 (Reuters) - Gold prices fell to their lowest in
nearly three months on Friday and headed for their worst week
since end-November, as recent strength in U.S. Treasury yields
dented the non-yielding metal's appeal.
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * Spot gold        fell 0.4% to $1,769.26 per ounce by 0100
GMT, having touched its lowest since Nov. 30 at $1,765.35
earlier in the session. Prices have declined 3% so far this
week.
    * U.S. gold futures        slipped 0.5% to $1,766.40.
    * Benchmark U.S. Treasury yields edged higher, having hit a
near one-year peak earlier in the week. Higher yields increase
the opportunity cost of holding bullion, which pays no interest.
    * The dollar        was also set to mark a weekly gain,
making gold expensive for holders of other currencies. 
    * U.S. jobless claims unexpectedly increased last week,
raising the possibility of a second straight month of tepid job
growth despite declining new COVID-19 infections.            
    * Switzerland's monthly gold exports to India in January
reached their highest since May 2019, though exports to China
and Hong Kong remained at rock bottom, customs data showed on
Thursday.             
    * Silver        eased 0.6% to $26.86 an ounce, after falling
over 1.8% so far this week, its worst since mid-January. 
    * Platinum        slipped 0.7% to $1,266.09 and was on
course to mark its third straight weekly gain, while palladium
       shed 0.3% to $2,345.02.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)
0700  UK      Retail Sales MM, YY                Jan
0700  UK      Retail Sales Ex-Fuel MM            Jan
0745  France  CPI (EU Norm) Final MM, YY         Jan
0815  France  Markit Mfg, Serv, Comp Flash PMIs  Feb
0830  Germany Markit Mfg, Serv, Comp Flash PMIs  Feb
0900  EU      Markit Mfg, Serv, Comp Flash PMIs  Feb
0930  UK      Flash Mfg, Serv, Comp PMIs         Feb
1445  US      Markit Mfg, Serv, Comp Flash PMIs  Feb
1500  US      Existing Home Sales                Jan

 (Reporting by Sumita Layek in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika
Syamnath)
  

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Pilbara Minerals Australia’s half-year earnings surged as the lithium market rebounded | Instant News


February 19 (Reuters) – Pilbara Minerals Ltd Australia on Friday reported a half-year revenue spike of more than 56% and showed bullish market conditions for lithium as its losses narrowed from the previous year.

The lithium market looks set to come out of a three-year slump, driven by rising demand for electric vehicles (EVs) from China that has helped support the price of the minerals used to make EV batteries.

Australian lithium miners, who together account for about half of the world’s supply, have started showing signs of improvement with record spodumene shipments in the December quarter and project acceleration.

“The lithium feedstock market is now clearly on an upward trend as it relates to demand and prices, which now translate into better spodumene prices,” said Pilbara Managing Director Ken Brinsden.

The company said shipments of spodumene concentrate for the six months to December 31 more than doubled to 114,239 dry metric tons.

That helped revenue jump 56.5% to A $ 59.1 million ($ 45.9 million), while after-tax losses narrowed to A $ 21.2 million from A $ 63.4 million a year earlier.

Banking on a rebound in lithium prices, Wesfarmers and Chilean miner SQM earlier this week approved a final investment decision for their Mt Holland lithium project in Western Australia. ($ 1 = Australian dollars 1.2882) (Reported by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)

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