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Market round-up: US oil supply glut catches funds off guard

LiveMint logoLiveMint 13-06-2017 Livemint

Crude oil markets are taking oil optimists by surprise yet again. Hedge funds boosted bets on a rally just before West Texas Intermediate prices tanked from a report showing surging American stockpiles. Wagers rose 7.3% to the highest since April in the week through 6 June, US Commodity Futures Trading Commission data shows. The next day, futures fell the most since March and are lingering near this year’s lows. All eyes turned to what’s happening in the US market after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ deal to limit output failed to impress investors as it didn’t include deeper cuts, additional allied countries or an exit plan. The report that American supplies of crude and products jumped the most since 2008 came as the last nail in the coffin. Futures—after reaching $52 a barrel in the run-up to the group’s meeting in Vienna last month—plunged to near $45 last week and edged up to settle at $46.08 on Monday. Bloomberg

Copper demand to rise ninefold by 2027: ICA

The growing number of electric vehicles (EVs) hitting the roads is set to fuel a ninefold increase in copper demand from the sector over the coming decade, according to an industry report on Tuesday. Electric or hybrid cars and buses are expected to reach 27 million by 2027, up from three million this year, according to a report by consultancy IDTechEx, commissioned by the International Copper Association (ICA). “Demand for electric vehicles is forecast to increase significantly over the next 10 years as technology improves, the price gap with petrol cars is closed and more electric chargers are deployed,” IDTechEx senior technology analyst Franco Gonzalez said in the report. “Our research predicts this increase will raise copper demand for electric cars and buses from 185,000 tonnes in 2017 to 1.74 million tonnes in 2027.” EVs use a substantial amount of copper in their batteries and in the windings and copper rotors used in electric motors. A single car can have up to 6km of copper wiring, according to ICA. Reuters

Local vendors lose ground in India’s solar roll-out

Foreign equipment suppliers emerged as top beneficiaries of the Indian solar push last fiscal year. Trina Solar, Hanwha and Risen Energy were the top three module suppliers, according to consulting firm Bridge to India. All of them gained market share. Domestic manufacturers’ combined market share fell to just 10.6% with none of them making it to the list of top 10 suppliers for the first time, Bridge to India said in a note. Modules are key components of a solar power plant. Despite the strong capacity addition pipeline, prospects do not look rosy for domestic manufacturers. With domestic content requirement policy shelved, domestic firms may find it difficult to compete with low-priced imports.

Subrata Jana/Mint

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