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Pandemic helps Russia tighten its grip on a key strategic metal

2nd July 2020 As the coronavirus pandemic pummeled demand from key customers in the auto industry, Russia’s biggest mining company quietly tightened its grip on the palladium market. MMC Norilsk Nickel was already the No. 1 miner of the metal used in autocatalysts, but the crisis has allowed it to gain market... 

Commodity freighters are shrugging off Covid-19. For now

1st July 2020 The cost of moving commodities like coal and iron-ore across the world’s oceans is surging as China lifts cargo purchases. Whether the rally will withstand the economic aftershocks of the coronavirus is a thornier question. Rates for giant capesize ships climbed to almost $31 000 a day on... 

Hydrogen to fuel giant mining trucks in green shift by Anglo

1st July 2020 Anglo American is advancing plans to convert its fleet of giant diesel-fueled mine trucks to hydrogen power as the company seeks to burnish its green credentials. More than 400 mine-haul trucks could be rebuilt to use hydrogen fuel, with a pilot project starting next year at Anglo American... 

After taking out $1 800, gold investors focus on Fed’s next step

1st July 2020 Fresh from cracking $1 800/pz, the global gold market wants to know what the Federal Reserve may do next to rescue the US economy, with minutes due later on Wednesday that may shed light on the central bank’s willingness to embrace yield curve control. Futures held near the highest in more than... 

A miner blew up ancient human history. Now an industry may pay

1st July 2020 Scraping away delicately at the reddish-brown earth of northwestern Australia’s vast Pilbara region, a team of archaeologists uncovered a record of life dating back more 40 000 years. Buried in natural shelters at the base of a cliff were thousands of stone and wooden tools, the sharpened fibula... 

House Democrats urge ‘racial justice’ on climate, carbon cut

30th June 2020 House Democrats unveiled an ambitious plan to combat climate change that won plaudits from mainstream environmentalists, but disappointed some progressives who have tried to push the party to the left on the issue. The more than 500-page report sets a target for the US to cut 88% of... 

Gold climbs above $1 800 for the first time since 2011

30th June 2020 Gold futures rose above $1 800/oz for the first time in eight years as low interest rates and a resurgence in coronavirus cases drive demand for the metal as a haven. The metal is heading for its best quarter since early 2016, benefiting from economic stimulus from the Federal Reserve and other... 

Copper heads for best quarter since 2010 as supply worries mount

29th June 2020 Copper is poised for its best quarter since 2010, helped by optimism over a stronger-than-expected demand rebound in top consumer China and mounting supply concerns in South America. The metal used in everything from automobiles to electronics has surged 21% this quarter, and climbed above $6... 

Eskom widens its funding search to sukuk market

29th June 2020 South Africa’s indebted power utility Eskom Holdings plans to issue a R1-billion sukuk bond as it tries to diversify funding sources to reduce borrowing costs. Eskom has appointed a lead arranger “to work towards establishing time lines for the issue,” spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha said in... 

Sasol’s asset sale programme advances with bids due for pipeline

29th June 2020 Sasol expects binding bids within weeks for its stake in a natural gas pipeline running from Mozambique to South Africa, as the company accelerates asset sales to pay off debt, according to people familiar with the process. The bidding round underway for the Rompco 865 km gas pipeline stake... 

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