Commodities Roundup: Credit squeeze felt

September 18, 2008

Look at meGold comes off but oil futures work to recoup $100 and at least one commodities-linked exchange is outperforming as central banks pump money into distressed markets. (Toronto’s benchmark stock index is rising over 2% at this moment. No such luck in Australia overnight and the reeling Russian market remains shuttered)

Still the banks crisis remains a potent presence. Energy trading heavyweight Morgan Stanley elected to withdraw from the Platts benchmark oil trading window in Asia on Thursday, steering clear of a possible test of its credit acceptance among counterparties.

The Australian picks up on a concern the credit crunch squeeze is hitting smaller exchange players, quoting Philip Gotthelf, president of Equidex Brokerage Group that some brokerage houses

“are at 150 per cent of exchange margin. They’re essentially shutting the little guy out completely”. It is harder to buy or sell crude, because “there’s less credit around to do it.”

On the plate today:

  • A lack of sufficient investment in new natural gas supplies and delays remain a major problem in most markets, Nobuo Tanaka, IEA executive director says.
  • U.S. ethanol makers wrestle with unpredictable corn prices and dwindling cash pile
  • MMS releases updated production data from Gulf of Mexico (1800 GMT )

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