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Battery Metals Crash Despite Commodity Rally

Friday February 22, 2019

In the latest edition of the Numbers Report, we’ll take a look at some of the most interesting figures put out this week in the energy and metals sectors. Each week we’ll dig into some data and provide a bit of explanation on what drives the numbers.

Let’s take a look.

1. Palladium rockets past $1,500

(Click to enlarge)

- Palladium surged above $1,500 per ounce this week, smashing records.
- Soaring prices are the result of a shortage. Palladium is used in vehicles to help with emissions controls.
- Prices for Palladium have tripled since 2016. Citigroup says that more price increases could be on the way because of supply shortages, and prices will only be held in check by a demand shock. Citi sees prices going up to $1,600. A supply shortage for Palladium is outweighing slower global auto sales.
- Palladium is produced mostly in Russia and South Africa.
- “Until you get an increase in supply coming onstream, which isn’t going to happen for a few years yet, this is going to result in a tight market and prices generally trending higher,” Philip Klapwijk, managing director of Precious Metals Insights Ltd., told Bloomberg.
- Not everyone agrees. Commerzbank said that prices are rising despite bearish forces, citing slower car sales in China. “We no longer understand the price response,” the bank said in a report this week. “That said,…

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