Improvement in global trade to support commodity prices

by: Frank Rijkers , Georgette Boele , Casper Burgering , Hans van Cleef

Monthly-Commodity-Update-Dec-2015.pdf (481 KB)

The CRB index decreased during November, driven by weakness in oil and metals prices. Lower oil prices have decreased the total cash costs of the mining of metals. In addition, the prospect of Fed lift-off, a higher US dollar, the reluctance of OPEC to support oil prices and bearishness about Chinese commodity demand have also weighed on the commodity price outlook. Commodity price weakness has been for a considerable part driven by investors fleeing commodities as an asset class. The near-term sentiment may remain negative. With investors being largely positioned for more weakness and consensus being negative, the impact on prices (such as a higher US dollar) is  diminishing. We judge commodities as an asset class is getting very cheap. Meanwhile, the fundamental outlook is improving with global growth and global trade to pick up next year. Looking forward, we expect China’s (annual) trade data to improve next year, as we expect China’s slowdown to remain gradual and negative base effects to fade out.