The broad metals rally continued in April with all but three of our MMI sub-indexes gaining value this month and two of those holding their value from last month. Only the GOES MMI lost value and that had more to do with its specialized market.
The Aluminum, Raw Steels, Global Precious, Renewables, Stainless Steel, Automotive and Construction MMIs all increased in April amid a broad commodities rally. The U.S. dollar continued to weaken, hitting its lowest point in 15 months, pushing oil and other key commodities up in value and helping metals see their boat rise with the tide.
In investments, both gold and silver are testing multiyear highs as investors look to them for a short-term safe haven from falling currencies.
Further dollar depreciation could increase demand for all dollar-denominated commodities and metals are currently in a sweet spot on the demand side, particularly because of China’s economic turnaround.
The China Front
Continued stimulus in China is increasing demand for steel, aluminum and other metals there. As we’ve previously reported, the People’s Bank of China has cut requirements for first-time homebuyers, cutting the minimum mortgage down payment from 25% to 20%, taking it to the lowest level of requirement ever.
This is just one of many stimulus measures that Beijing has undertaken in recent months. However, global steel and aluminum oversupply is still a top concern, and China’s role in that glut continues to be front and center.
With U.S. home sales and the non-residential sector continuing to show strength, construction in both of the world’s largest markets has been a positive driver for metal, as has automotive demand.