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SEB report: New Year rally – but not in commodities

Global equity markets have performed strongly since the start of 2013 while most commodities markets have moved sideways at best. SEB’s commodities expert Filip Petersson sees little upside in the short term.

In a new issue of Commodities Monthly they project that towards the end of the year commodities markets should recover as the economy picks up speed.

Brent crude oil should fall slightly and average around 107.50 dollars per barrel in the first quarter, before recovering in the second half of the year.

The industrial metal rally in late 2012, triggered by relief that the Chinese economy was showing signs of stabilising, had already lost momentum by late December.

“Still, we believe the industrial metals sector is most likely of all commodity sectors to end 2013 higher,” says Filip Petersson, Commodity Strategist at SEB.

In general he says industrial metals prices should move upward mostly in the second half while they could fall back in the short term.

In the precious metals sector, gold continues to disappoint SEB’s already downgraded forecasts and new offensives in the global devaluation war. With macroeconomic conditions expected to stabilise and growth to pick up slightly, a return to the gold bull market is now less likely, according to Petersson and his colleagues.

While there are some worrying conditions in the U.S., SEB’s experts see no clear trend for agricultural prices in the short term. They believe U.S. soil moisture conditions will most likely be decisive for grain markets in 2013.