GENEVA, April 13 (Reuters) – Swiss banks are expanding
aggressively in commodity trade finance and have lured top
talent away from dominant French rivals as refinancing woes
force them to curb their activities.
Commodity trade finance, the low-risk and low-margin
business of lending cash to arbitrage copper shipments and
import grain, has been in crisis since French banks started
cutting back last year due to a shortage of dollar liquidity.
GENEVA, April 12 (Reuters) – India has vaulted to the top of
the list of Iran’s oil customers, overtaking China, in a first
quarter buying surge ahead of tighter sanctions against Tehran
this summer, data published by a leading industry consultant
Direct imports to India from Iran were 433,000 barrels per
day (bpd) in the first quarter compared with 256,000 bpd to
China, according to data compiled by Geneva’s Petrologistics and
seen by Reuters via an industry source.
GENEVA, April 10 (Reuters) – As much as half the assets
stowed in Swiss banks, estimated by experts at $2 trillion, may
be undeclared money, the Chief Executive of India’s Hinduja
Group’s Geneva-based banking arm told Reuters in an interview.
But Switzerland’s strategy of sweeping accounts of
undeclared funds as part of its clean-money strategy is not
likely to spark an exodus of funds in favor of rival offshore
centers, Charles de Boissezon said.
GENEVA (Reuters) – Hinduja Group’s Swiss-based private banking arm is able to continue providing financing to trading houses shipping food to Iran, its chief executive told Reuters, despite difficulties in processing payments.
“We are happy to provide help for the Iranian people in supporting trade finance on a humanitarian basis for food and pharmaceuticals,” Chief Executive Charles de Boissezon told Reuters by telephone.
GENEVA, April 5 (Reuters) – Hinduja Group’s Swiss-based
private banking arm said on Thursday it plans to double its
commodity trade finance team by hiring five new staff.
The Indian family-owned conglomerate invests in sectors
including energy and automobiles and employs more than 50,000
GENEVA, March 30 (Reuters) – BNP Paribas said it
had appointed the new managing director for Switzerland, turning
to its global head of commodities trade finance as it expressed
its commitment to the sector, which has come under strain from
the euro zone crisis.
Philippe de Gentile, who will move to Geneva and retain his
role as global head of energy and commodity finance, replaces
previous managing director Jacques-Olivier Thomann.
GENEVA, March 26 (Reuters) – Africa’s top oil producer
Nigeria has opened a tender process to sell its oil via
multi-billion dollar annual term contracts beginning in June, an
official notice showed.
State-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)
invited refiners, trading houses and local Nigerian oil
companies to submit bids by April 5, according to the notice.
GENEVA, March 23 (Reuters) – Asian imports of West African
crude oil are set to slip to 1.56 million barrels per day (bpd)
in April while holding above the average level for 2011, a
Reuters survey of oil flows showed.
Asia is expected to import 51 cargoes from West Africa in
April, compared with an average of 50 during last year.
GENEVA (Reuters) – Human activity kept global temperatures close to a record high in 2011 despite the cooling influence of a powerful La Nina weather pattern, the World Meteorological Organization said on Friday.
On average, global temperatures in 2011 were lower than the record level hit the previous year but were still 0.40 degrees Centigrade above the 1961-1990 average and the 11th highest on record, the report said.
GENEVA, March 21 (Reuters) – High-frequency traders have
caused U.S. commodity futures prices to disconnect from market
fundamentals of supply and demand since the 2008 financial
crisis, according to one of the authors of a forthcoming U.N.
Also known as black-box players, they plug algorithms into
computers to generate numerous, lightning-speed automatic trades
that are designed to make money from arbitrage on razor-thin
price differences and movements.