Futures & Commodities

The commodity slump in 4 scary charts

What’s your chart of the week?

Plummeting commodity prices have managed to roil sentiment and drag down global asset markets this week, sending stocks in Asia, Wall Street and Europe into negative territory by Friday trade.

CNBC highlights the major moves that are dominating the metals, mining and oil markets.


Metals were hammered early on Friday, with the Shanghai market for aluminum dipping below 10,000 yuan ($1,568) per ton for the first time ever during Asian trade.

Meanwhile, LME aluminum was sitting at $1,497 per ton with prices down over 25 percent since January.

Russian aluminum giant Rusal Friday morning announced it was slashing its output by 200,000 tons over the course of the next six to nine months, amid concerns over sluggish Chinese aluminum exports.


Three-month London copper future prices were also feeling the pain. Prices fell to their lowest in six years at $4,787.50 a ton. LME Copper is now down around 25 percent since January.

It's caused global jitters, as copper is traditionally seen as the "canary in the coalmine" for global growth. However, Julian Jessop, head of commodities research at Capital Economics, said he expects the copper story to improve.

"It may take some better news on China's manufacturing sector to turn sentiment around, but that should not be too long in coming," he wrote in a research note.

"Confidence in China is... showing some signs of recovering as more policy stimulus is introduced, at least judging by the rebound in the equity market," Jessop added, saying he expects a further recovery in prices, with

He now forecasts copper prices will reach $5,500 per ton by year-end 2015, and $7,000 by the end of 2016.


After weeks of chatter around oil staying lower for longer, Brent is now looking like it will be down 5 percent for the week, marking its biggest loss in two months.

U.S. crude oil futures hit a two-and-a-half month low of $41.38 a barrel, and were on track for a 5.5 percent weekly loss.

It comes as the International Energy Agency (IEA) reported oil stockpiles hit a record 3 billion barrels on Friday, adding that forecasts pointed to slowing demand next year.


Spot gold was gaining little traction on Friday off lows last seen in February 2010. The precious metal closed Thursday's session at $1,074.26 per ounce, and was trading near $1083.76 at 11:00 GMT Friday.

"The rising optimism over the increased possibility of a U.S. interest rate rise in December has threatened gold and led to the precious metal collapsing down to five-year lows," FXTM Research Analyst Lukman Otunuga wrote in a market note.

"If the Fed do move forward with a U.S. rate hike in December, gold sellers may be offered an invitation to send this zero yielding metal back down to the $1050 level," he added.