SUMMARY

Copper  European car sales up by 10% in March and by 8% in March Qtr.

Nickel  Prices increasing on supply tension.  BHP nickel under due diligence.  Yabulu refinery down.

Zinc & Lead Red Dog production unaffected by nearby earthquakes.  GM world-wide sales up 2% in March Qtr.

Tin  Tin exports from Indonesia down 2.5% mo-on-mo, and 2013 tin exports down 7.3% yr-on-yr.

Aluminium Chalco to suspend aluminium and alumina capacity in oversupplied market.

Gold  In 2013 China became the world’s largest jewellery and physical bullion market.

Platinum & Palladium  Producers increased offer for South African miners in bid to end strike.

Oil  USA imports of oil falling markedly, yet remains the largest oil importer in the world.

Coal  Canadian met-coal mines to be idled.  Ukraine gas affecting Euro-thermal market.  Indonesia! – still attempting to control market pricing.

Iron Ore Record iron ore shipments from Port Hedland in March.  China steel output rate up in early April.

Shipping  Freight rates edging down for cape-size Asia-Pacific routes this week.

Economic Metrics

Port Hedland Iron Ore shipments at record levels in March.  80% goes to China!
Singapore shipping traffic recovered healthily in March.
China’s output of Industrial Products, mostly maintaining growth trends for:  copper materials, alumina, fertiliser (the only negative growth rate), iron ore, steel products, vehicles, non-ferrous metals, electricity, cement,
USA New Housing Starts slowdown in March starts, but increased growth in permitting.