Saturday, November 14, 2009

Gold Prices Will Continue Rising

Gold Prices

News on the street has been a number of investors are allegedly believing gold is experiencing a bubble, and so it may be time to get out and take some profits. I don't believe that's true.

The reason I said allegedly above is because of the possibility that speculators who did in fact believe gold prices would fall shorted the market, and so now that they've been getting clobbered over the last couple of months, could be attempting to communicate the gold bubble idea in order to create a self-fulfilling prophecy which they could financially benefit from.

A gold bubble isn't what is moving the price of gold up, but the incredibly ignorant moves of the Obama administration is what's moving the prices, as the inevitalbe inflation coming from the spending of trillions still is generating investment in gold, and that isn't going to end any time soon.

When a bubble happens in any investment sector, it's when the general public finally catches wind of what's going on and stampedes like a herd of cattle toward that investment when prices start to surge based on speculation and ignorance, and not market and economic forces. That's not what's driving gold prices up, and until it is, we're going to continue to see gold prices rise for a long time to come.

Gold Prices

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Gold Prices Rise to $1,500

As measured in U.S. dollars, gold prices surged to another record level, surpassing the $1,500 a troy ounce for the first time in history.

Investing legend Jim Rogers stated that while he wouldn't buy gold on these highs, he's also not betting against it either. Rogers is of course hoping it will drop, having said recently he would buy more gold if there is a drop or correction. For now he's sitting on gold.

Even though this is a record gold price high for gold as measured by the U.S. dollar, in terms of other currencies, it still has a way to go before enjoying that distinction.

In reference to the Australian dollar, it isn't even close to a gold price high, as it's still 30 percent lower than that currencies record, and against the yen it's 15 percent less than that gold price record.

This is a much a result of the collapsing U.S. dollar as it is concern over inflation and the uncertainty of the economic conditions.

Monday, October 5, 2009

How Will Oil Be Traded? Maybe Not in U.S. Dollars

A growing number of nations are negotiating to drop the use of the U.S. dollar as the currency used to trade oil, which originally would be replaced by a basketfull of currencies, and over the long haul an as yet undetermined currency.

Inluded in the countries currently negotiating are France, the Arab states, Japan, China, Russia, and Brazil. India may eventually get on board as well, making it a considerable force in the future. Goals are to make the change from trading oil in U.S. dollars to a basket of currencies by 2018.

Nations understand the extraordinary and misguided practices and policies of the U.S. government and the way it has spent money to bailout the numerous industries they refuse to allow to fail, and the amazing size of the debt incurred to do it.

All this means the U.S. dollar will continue to fall in value as the printing of money continues from the Federal Reserve.

America will find itself struggling to maintain its economic dominance as a result, and there's literally nothing that can be done about it unless the horrid economic policies are abandoned and the political will is there to make it happen.

It's doubtful that will happen any time soon, and so we'll probably have to go through a lot more pain before America and its politicians abandon the economic path they're traveling and return to financial sanity.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Wheat in Sixth Quarterly Drop

The sixth straight quarterly drop by wheat is the longest losing streak in a minimum of 50 years, as global supply far exceeds demand, continuing to put downward pressure on wheat prices.

According to USDA data, global wheat stockpiles have increased by 10 percent to reach 186.6 million tons during 2009-2010. Oveall production could reach as high as 663.7 tons, only behind last year's 682.3 million tons.

With many other countries focusing on increasing their own domestic wheat supplies, imports have plunged to 121.1 million tons from the 141.2 million tons at the same time last year.

As of mid-September, only 10.5 million metric tons of wheat, or 386 bushels was ordered by foreign buyers, a huge decrease of 36 percent from a year ago.

Wheat supply and prices - Wheat prices going down

Silver | Precious Metal Driving Prices

Silver Prices going up

With silver being valuable as a precious metal and industrial metal, it is important to know what is driving prices at any one time and invest accordingly.

Now that inflation fears are as high as ever, the precious metal side of the equation has been driving silver prices up, and that shouldn't abate any time soon.

This of course doesn't mean supply and demand of silver for industrial uses won't be an ongoing factor in silver prices, just that it's not the primary driver at this time, but will continue to be over the long term.

Silver Prices going up

Fed Admits “Gold Swap Arrangements”

Ron Paul has been pressing the Federal Reserve concerning its outrageous practice of interfering in the gold market through “gold swap arrangements” with foreign banks.

Not only is this an outrage to investors, but the entangling alliances brought about through these arrangement aren't currently under any oversight; one of the reasons the Federal Reserve has been battling Ron Paul so hard on not being audited.

Federal Reserve Board member Kevin M. Warsh recently replied to a request from a lawyer of GATA under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act. concerning these gold swaps, saying, "In connection with your appeal, I have confirmed that the information withheld under Exemption 4 consists of confidential commercial or financial information relating to the operations of the Federal Reserve Banks that was obtained within the meaning of Exemption 4. This includes information relating to swap arrangements with foreign banks on behalf of the Federal Reserve System and is not the type of information that is customarily disclosed to the public. This information was properly withheld from you."

We need to get information from the Federal Reserve on these gold swaps, and also find out what else they are hiding.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Peter Schiff: Gold Could Rise to $5,000 and More

As measured against gold, Peter Schiff said in a recent interview that gold and the Dow could end up trading at a ratio of one-to-one, as against the existing level of 9.7-to-1. Consequently, gold could very easily rise to $5,000 or more according to Schiff, over the next several years.

What that means is the Dow will plunge another 90 percent from where it stands now as measured against gold.

Even though gold has risen significantly, it's still being held back by concerns that will eventually fall away when it starts climbing from between $2,000 and $3,000 an ounce.

Schiff said it could take on similar growth as tech stocks did in 1999, possibly moving up in $100 increments a day at many points.

Much of Schiff's view on gold is based on the misguided policies of the Obama administration, along with the Federal Reserve, which refused to cut back on printing money and bailing out banks and companies they consider "too big to fail."

Norway Ready to Go to Gates of Hell for Oil

Norway Oil

Having explored the majority of its Norwegian shelf, Norway is looking to other more remote regions in order to remain a major player in the oil industry, which has largely paid for the welfare nation's lifestyle.

One area they're looking toward is a volcanic island in the Arctic with the strange name of Jan Mayen, which was at one time supposedly called the 'Gates of Hell,' based on the possibly true legend of being discovered by Brendan, and Irish monk, who when seeing the vulanic activity thought he had literally discovered the Gates of Hell.

Norway will find it hard to finance its welfare state if oil production continues to fall as it has recently, with estimates in this year alone dropping by 9.7 percent, according to the Petroleum Directorate. Oil and gas accounts for about 25 percent of the economic output of Norway at this time.

The first step will be to drill a shallow well outside of Jan Mayen to make an assessment on the geological structures in the area. Oil drilling in the region won't begin until about 2020.

Norway Oil

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Brazil Finds Another Huge Oil Field

Brazil continues to increase its reputation as a major player in the oil business, discovering another major oil field, with estimates of up to two billion barrels of oil able to be recovered from it.

This oil discovery is called Guara, and is the result of the new techniques being used which can find oil under the salty sea bottom, which were undiscoverable before.

Estimates in the overall region is what is being called pre-salt reserves, cover a huge range, from a low of 60 billion barrels of oil to 150 billion barrels of oil.

There is no doubt that once the economic crisis begins to wane down, which could still be several years away, Brazil is poised to be come the major oil producer in the region, and as a result change the political and social structure of the region, as they become the largest Latin American provider of energy, overtaking the socialist foolishness of Hugo Chávez and his continuing destruction of Venezuela.

So far it is the largest area of oil discovered this century, and more than likely won't be the last, as the ocean floors are scoured for new oil fields that couldn't be seen in the recent past.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Everyone Drilling Oil but U.S.?

Oil Exploration and Drilling

It's extraordinary that countries around the world are drilling and pursuing oil, with the exception of off the coasts of America and within its borders as well, where billion's of barrels are sitting there because of the far left environmental activists pressuring Democrats, who refuse to ignore them and open up our land and coasts to the billions of barrels of oil already known to be available to us, along with the potentially huge, unknown reserves there for the taking.

I'm not saying American Oil Companies aren't drilling, just that they're not drilling off the coasts of the U.S., which would be very lucrative and helpful to the American economy and American people.

Bizarrely, the Obama administration continues to resist drilling off the shores of the U.S. while oil companies from other nations cash in, like BP from the UK did recently in the Gulf, where they found billions of barrels of oil recently, although it'll take time to know how much it is overall. They are also going to drill a second place in attempts to tap into even more reserves, while the U.S. oil policy is in shambles because of political special interests.

Even though Congress repealed the restrictions on 85 percent of American waters, the Department of Interior under the Obama administration hasn't issued one lease to an oil company for drilling and exploration.

Foolishly, the result will be continued dependence on foreign oil and whims, while we sit on potential resources that could help ween us from this foreign oil dependence in a big way.

Interestingly, the discovery of the Tiber oil by BP in the gulf recently has led some to believe it is a big piece of evidence that strengthens the abiotic theory of oil's origins.

The abiotic theory of oil asserts that any type of hydrocarbon, which includes gas and oil, is the result of natural chemical processes deep in the earth which rise through the fissures of the planet and is usually deposited in sedimentary layers beneath the surface.

What is hypocritical in all this is under the Obama administration, the U.S.Export-Import bank loaned $2 billion to Brazil's Petrobras for furthering their offshore drilling efforts. This gives support to billionaire George Soros, an avid Obama supporter, who owns a stake in Petrobras, which is a state-owned oil and gas company.

Oil Exploration and Drilling

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

BP in Big Oil Discovery in Gulf of Mexico

Oil Discovery BP

Drilling down to over 35,000 feet, BP Plc made a significant oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico at the Tiper Prospect, with an estimate of over 3 billion barrels of oil found there.

The 35,000 plus foot drill is the deepest exploration well in history.

It is expected to be in production during the latter part of the next decade, and help BP bring oil production to about 600,000 barrels a day sometime after 2020.

According to BP's lead executive for exploration and production, Andy Inglis, this could increase production of the company between one to two percent from between 2013 and 2020. That of course depends upon how long it takes to get the oil field on line.

This is the second material discovery in what is called the Lower Tertiary in the Gulf of Mexico by BP. The other one was a smaller field named Kaskida. Kaskida is estimated to hold about 3 billion barrels of oil, and Tiber is bigger than that, said BP. Plans are in place to drill as second well in Tiber sometime in 2010.

According to BP, they are the largest net leaseholder in the Lower Tertiary area.

Oil Discovery BP

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Wheat Futures Prices Near Term

Wheat Futures Prices

Wheat futures in the U.S. should continue to go nowhere for some time ahead unless something extraordinary happens where huge losses come about, which could probably only happen in Australia.

Production estimates for wheat continue to increase while demand decreases, cutting back significantly on wheat exports.

The USDA estimated 2009 U.S. wheat production was raised to 2.184 billion bushels from its July estimate of 2.112 billion, while the global wheat crop increased to 659.3 million tons from 656.5 million tons last month. The USDA's estimate for global ending stocks -- or what is left over after supply and demand are accounted for - also increased.

Wheat prices have plunged over the past year as global supplies have increased, and there is little sign of anything changing.

The continuing bearish information strengthened "the prevailing tone of the wheat market - one adrift in search of a persuasive fundamental storyline and dependant upon direction from other commodities," J.P. Morgan analyst Lewis Hagedorn said. "Absent a large decline in Australian production or demonstration of increasing global demand for protein wheat, prices appear likely to continue a gradual downward slide."

CBOT wheat will probably continue to experience new contract lows, although losses will be limited during the medium term by possible strength in CBOT corn and soybeans. Wheat prices should generally remain rangebound during the next couple of months.

Projections are it's possible September wheat could drop as low as $4.50 or December wheat to touch $4.75. The top end of the contracts' ranges should be about $5.25 for September, assuming a rally in beans and corn comes about.

A lot of negative things would have to happen across the world in order for any type of rally to happen, along with El Niño drying up Australian wheat fields, a continuing wheat disaster in Argentina, and an ongoing rain shortage in the Black Sea Region

But even with all of that happening, there's no surety, as the other places in the world have shored up their domestic wheat production, which is the real mitigating factor in the overall scheme of things.

At best there would be a mild recovery of wheat prices assuming all the above happens, but that doesn't guarantee the U.S. would be getting that business.

Wheat Futures Prices

Monday, August 10, 2009

Wheat Exports in Slow Start

Exports of U.S. wheat promise to be down significantly for 2009-2010, according to the USDA, as projections are for about 925 million bushels of wheat to export during that time period, where the marketing year began on June 1.

Assuming this is accurate, which it seems it's close, that would be 90 million less bushels of wheat exported this year over last, and a huge 339 million less than the 2007-2008 year.

At this pace it'll be the third worst year of wheat exports in 25 years.

Wheat export inspections for the first 9.6 weeks show that they're at 130.7 million bushels; almost 100 million bushels under last year at this time. The weekly average wheat inspection has been at an anemic 13.7 million bushels.

This is even far below the USDA export projection of 925 million bushels, as the average needed to reach that is 18.7 million bushels for the rest of the year, which will be difficult to attain.

While some say this isn't a good comparison over the very quick rate of wheat exports last year, it still is far behind what would be needed to reach projections. As fo the end of July, the USDA said outstanding export sales of wheat stood at 148 million bushels, while last year it was at 276 million bushels.

The USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report breaks down exports and export sales by where the wheat is headed and by class of wheat. Through July 30, export commitments compared to those of last year plunged by 60 percent for hard red winter wheat, 63 percent for soft red winter wheat, and 26 percent for hard red spring wheat. Export commitments were 17 percent larger for white wheat and 15 percent larger for durum wheat. Commitments for all classes of wheat were down by a huge 46 percent.

Among its largest wheat trading partners, commitments have dropped significantly; 27 percent to the Philippines, 45 percent to Japan, 48 percent to Mexico, and 87 percent to Egypt. Egypt buys only soft red winter wheat from the U.S.

Exports of wheat globally are down this year because a number of countries have significantly increased wheat production domestically, so diminishing the amount of wheat needed for its citizenry outside the countries.

Much of the recent low wheat prices has been attributed primarily to the decline in export demand for soft red winter wheat, which doesn't look to change this year.

As far as wheat inventories globally, they are expected to grow by 8 percent this year, which equals 512 million bushels. Of that, China will account for 80 percent of the wheat inventory increase.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Chevron Angola Oil Discovery

In what is at this time only being identified as a major oil discovery, Chevron announced that the find off Angola's shores still needs to be confirmed by further drilling, but the prospects of a significant oil field are pretty much ensured; it's only a matter of how much oil the field holds, which in cases like this are usually considered over 500 million barrels.

The oil and natural gas field is located off the Cabinda coast of Angola, enlarging the already significant portfolio Chevron has in the African nation.

Its affiliate Cabinda Gulf Oil Co made the find, of which Chevron has a 39.2 percent stake in. The state oil company of Angola - Sonangol owns 41 percent of Cabinda, while Total SA of France owns 10 percent and ENI SpA of Italy has a 9.8 percent stake in Cabinda.

This find continues to underscore the West African nation's growing importance to Chevron and the country's rising stature as an energy producer as its neighbor Nigeria continues to deal with militant attacks on its oil pipelines, which has cut oil production by 20 percent over the last three years.

This is one of many oil and gas discoveries off of Angola, which produced 1.85 million barrels of oil a day in July 2009.

Chevron, which now pumps over 500,000 barrels of oil a day from Angola, said the discovery, in Block 0, was drilled in March in 397 feet of water to a total vertical depth of 13,000 feet. It encountered over 225 feet of net hydrocarbon pay in the Upper Pinda formation, according to the company. Overall, Angola's output stands at about 2.1 million barrels of oil a day, which is a huge 53 percent increase from 2006.

Chevron also said the 79-3XST1 discovery well had a flow rate of 11.6 million cubic feet of natural gas and 2,550 barrels of liquid hydrocarbons a day.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Mutant Corn's Natural Defenses Enhanced

Genetically Enhanced Corn Natural Defenses

Using a plant gene from oregano which sends out a chemical call for help from the western corn rootworm (in reality a beetle), which studies show have proven to be effective deterrent when parasitic roundworms respond and start to kill the pests almost immediately.

Researchers say this could lead to solid corn harvests with less need for expensive pesticides.

How the research was conducted was regular corn was planted alongside the mutant corn and beetle larvae released among them. After that nematodes, or otherwise called roundworms were released as well, and results were the beetle larvae had been killed in three days.

As far as damage during that time, the genetically modified corn incurred far less damage than regular corn, and the numbers of beetle were 60 percent less on the mutant corn.

"As soon as the nematodes hit [the genetically modified plants]—within three days the larvae were killed," said study co-author Ted Turlings, a zoologist at the University of Neuchâtel in Switzerland.

It's postulated that the selective breeding used in the U.S. to produce faster-growing plants, along with pesticide use, may have slowly gnawed away at the natural defense mechanism in U.S. plants, in contrast to corn varieties used in Europe; although that's far from proven in any way.

Genetically Enhanced Corn Natural Defenses

Global Demand for Wheat Down

Wheat Market

Wheat futures continue their downward slide as they are down a whopping 33 percent from the same time last year, and the overall market looks to continue to be bearish, as international demand continues to slide.

“The wheat market is in a slumber,” Stuart Richardson, Australian commodity management spokesman for the Melbourne- based company, said today. “Flour mills around the world have generally entered the new season with greater stocks in their supply line than the year before.

“There is plenty of wheat available competing for limited demand, so the fundamental market picture is bearish,” Richardson added, which updated estimated wheat prices for Australian farmers. “Production risk is diminishing in the northern hemisphere, with the winter wheat harvests almost complete in the U.S. and well advanced in the European Union and Black Sea region.”

For the second month in a row wheat futures have fallen, and wheat speculators and hedge fund managers are increasing their short positions in the golden grain, believing they haven't yet reached their lows.

Wheat Market

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Oregon Admits Ethanol Damages Engines

Good Ethanol-free Gas Now Available in Oregon

Pressure from consumers (voters) caused Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski to change Oregon law in order to sell premium gasoline with ethanol blended with it, as outraged consumers rebel against the horrid fuel as it destroys their expensive small engine products.

Now Oregonians will have good gas available for their machines as before only a few scattered stations sold ethanol free gas, and it was prohibitive to get it for many in the state.

All gas stations across the state can now sell good gas, and hopefully this will encourage other states to follow, and get rid of this worthless, tax payer-financed boondoggle that, while promoting some political careers, is devastating to consumers and the environment, in name of, of course, the environment.

This is nothing new, as boat motor owners, chainsaw owners, snowmobile owners, law mower owners, and any small engine machinery owner of any kind have discovered: ethanol is bad gas, and the sooner we get rid of the misguided policy, the better.

What this does is confirm what was always known - but stubbornly and criminally neglected - that ethanol is damaging, and needs to be completely rejected, as the industry can't survive unless as another socialist industry that people simply have no desire to underwrite, and in an alleged free market like the united States, shouldn't have to.

Incredibly, federal authorities and regulators are actually thinking about increasing ethanol blends to 15 percent, which many fear would start to damage some automobiles as well.

Antique autos already suffer from having to use the gas, although in Oregon, that has now changed.

How about some class action lawsuits to destroy this industry forever. Nobody but politicians and greed big business farmers want this to continue, and that's not a good enough reason to destroy poor people through higer food prices because of the artificial industry, and that includes many of the poorest countries in the world, which resulted in food riots because of high prices from the ethanol nonsense.

Good Ethanol-free Gas Now Available in Oregon

Gold Prices | 12-Day Low

Gold Prices

Gold prices plunged to a 12-day low, after a 2 percent drop in oil prices and 1 percent decline in U.S. equity indexes, as investors took profits when a weak U.S. confidence reading implied consumer demand would languish for some time to come, and that will definitely be true.

Other precious metals, which rose to multi-week highs in early trading, changing direction to also suffer steep losses when investors decided to sell a bunch of commodities it the midst declining confidence.

Spot gold dropped to a low of $934.70 an ounce, its lowest since July 17, to change hands in late New York trade a bit higher at $936.95 an ounce, down from $953.25 an ounce in late Monday business.

New York August gold futures tumbled $14.40, or 1.51 percent, to $939.10 an ounce on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

August gold's average plummeted to a low at $933.80 - last experienced on July 17 - from a day's high at $956.80.

Along with lower oil and share prices, gold added to losses when the U.S. dollar increased from its lowest level of the year against a currency basket. The dollar rebounded as sinking confidence rekindled worries about the U.S. economic recovery and increased demand for safe-haven assets.

Gold, like other dollar-priced commodities, becomes less expensive for holders of other currencies as the U.S. unit weakens.

"We ran into profit taking. We had a technical failure at the $956 level. A little bit of dollar strength, a little bit of stock market weakness, a little bit of crude weakness cascaded into the tight trailing stops," said Frank McGhee, head precious metals trader at Integrated Brokerage Services LLC in Chicago.

McGhee said there were a number of factors driving the price down, including a series of automatic sell orders bunched up between $942 to $958 an ounce that lead to accelerated selling in the New York afternoon session.

Crude prices fell 2 percent, causing interest in gold to decline as a hedge against oil-led inflation.

Gold Prices

CFTC Caves in to Government

Government Interference in Oil Markets

Somehow the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which has always said it has never found a correlation between speculation and oil price swings, has suddenly got regulation religion, and now says it's ready to go before Congress and 'admit' speculators are playing a huge role in price runups. This is plain evil, and an investigation needs to be conducted on where this new found information has come from, and if shady politicians and some big energy companies are behind the new found information.

Any price swing in any commodity can happen short term with commodity investors, but to say that is what's behind the price swing of last year which pushed oil prices up is in itself huge speculation, and just another attempt by the socialist Obama and Democrats to attempt to play god, thinking they can alter the age-old reality of supply and demand.

One of the major reasons this is ludicrous is commodity investors can make money when prices go up and down, and so the idea they can push prices up on their own has no merit, and supply and demand always bring it back to reality either way, as consumer respond to price swings. It's as simple as that, and the strong-arming and dishonesty emerging concerning so-called speculators being able to manipulate the market in any meaningful way is just ugly and a lie.

Some Democrats need to be investigate concerning this, along with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to see if there is any criminal activity concerning this sudden turn around by the CFTC, which is unprecedented.

Misguided and misinformed watchers say this will help consumers. No it won't. Consumers do struggle at times when prices swing up, but they also profit tremendously when prices go down. To say government regulation of the oil market will make a difference is stupid and ignorant.

The failure of socialism and turning of communist countries to capitalism has already shown that governments cannot and should not attempt to interfere with any market, as the unintended consequences that always follow never seem to teach them to stick to minding their own business, rather than interfering with the market place.

Government Interference in Oil Markets

Silver Market Outperforming Gold

Silver Prices Going Up

So far this year silver has outperformed gold, and that could continue on for some times, as silver is not only used as a hedge against inflation, but trades much more on supply and demand than its stronger cousin gold, which will keep silver prices going up.

With commodities certain to perform strongly in the years ahead, and silver possibly one of the potentially strongest performers among commodity metals, it future looks bright for investors in this area.

Those that understand commodities are starting to respond stronger in preparation for that, and one of those is the European-based ETF Securities, which has just created a new ETF focusing on silver.

"It's the first step in building a platform for commodities," said Graham Tuckwell, founder and chairman of ETF Securities.

This particular ETF will buy silver, and those investing in it will be buying into physical silver stored in a vault and stamped with a serial number.

Silver prices should continue to go up as demand outpaces supply, and new demand causes permanent usage of the metal which is unrecoverable.

Silver Prices Going Up

Corn Silking Behind 5-year Average

Corn Silking, doughing news

While corn silking improved by 24 points for the week, now standing 55 percent complete, which is equal to last year's silking, but far behind the 5-year corn silking average by 21 points.

The corn belt performed very well because conditions have remained ideal for corn silking, as 34 percent of the crop is at that stage in Minnesota and Iowa. Illinois corn silking came in at 27 percent.

Acroos the nation, 7 percent of corn acreage is beyond the dough stage, again, the same as last year at this time, but 10 points slower than the average.

North Carolina has the most advanced doughing stage, now standing at 80 percent complete, while Minnesota and Iowa haven't reached that stage yet, and neither has corn in other Great Lakes regions or Great Plains regions.

Appromimately 70 percent of all corn in the U.S. is rated as good to excellent in condition, a little down from last week, but still 4 points better than a year ago at this time.

Corn silking, doughing news

Funding of Perennial Wheat Study

Perennial Wheat Research

While the idea of developing a perennial wheat strain is a great one, the thought of using taxpayers money to do it is outrageous.

Researchers at Michigan State University are recipients of the $1 million in federal grants (taxpayers money) to work on developing a perennial wheat strain.

There's the potential to generate huge savings for farmers if wheat didn't have to be replanted every season. The fuel and labor cost declines would be magnificent.

According to lead researcher Sieg Snapp, a perennial wheat strain would help reduce erosion problems and keep moisture in the soil longer.

Again, the idea is a great one, it should be done with private money and entrepreneurs, not taxpayer money.

Perennial Wheat Research

Montana Winter Wheat Harvest Starts

Montana Winter Wheat Harvest

Reports are the winter wheat harvest in Montana has started, according to the Montana Crop Weather Report issued Monday at the Montana Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Approximately 4 percent of the state's winter wheat harvest is complete, in contrast to 2 percent during the same time period last year. This is far behind the five-year winter wheat harvest average in Montana, which usually stands at 25 percent at this time.

So far farmers are rating the Montana winter wheat crop at 41 percent good and only 36 percent fair.

Close to 30 percent of the Montana spring wheat crop is turning according to the report, in comparison to 46 percent last years at the same time. That is faring a little better, with farmers rating the spring wheat crop at 47 percent good, while 31 percent is rated as fair.

The conditons of range and pasture feed are down about five percent from last year, with 39 percent being rated as good, a decline from 44 percent last year during the same period.

Dry conditions have causes pastures to dry up.

Montana Winter Wheat Harvest

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

CBOT Owner Resists Wheat Restrictions

Wheat Markets

The attempt by the government to regulate and interfere with the wheat market could be another disaster in the making, as the completely foolish, misguided and clueless Democrats continue their assault on free markets.

According to Charles Carey, vice chairman of CBOT owner CME Group Inc., government restrictions on trading "are more likely to be harmful to the functioning of our markets than helpful," and he's absolutely right.

The idea that we should have some type of perfection in place so no one ever gets hurt is outrageous, socialist and fascist to the core. Short term fluctations in wheat prices will never last, and that's the illusory problem the goofy Democrats think needs to be solved.

Unbelievably, federal regulators are "seriously considering" restrictions in the wheat futures market being urged by lawmakers concerned over speculation they say has artificially inflated prices, supposedly interfering risk management by farmers and grain processors.

After a wasted year and time, a faux investigation by the investigative panel of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee found that the disconnect between the wheat futures and cash markets can mean higher prices for consumers. They say this with a straight face when corn prices and lack of planting of wheat does more to jack up the prices because of other government interference through subsidies from taxpayers dollars.

A number of senators have called on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to restrict the volume of index trading in the wheat futures market on the Chicago Board of Trade, a completely ridiculous idea.

Foolishly, CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler told the Senate subcommittee at a recent hearing that the agency "is seriously considering this recommendation ... (and) will continue to closely monitor the performance of the wheat futures contract."

Democrat Panel chairman Carl Levin, ignorantly said such a review "is badly needed." Several other members of the committee, representing farm states, voiced concern about the impact of market problems on wheat producers in those states.

Again, to me much of this is to hide the real culprit in wheat prices, federal subsidies of corn for the failing corn-based ethanol industry, which is pushing up prices because of less acreage used for wheat because of the artifical price increases created by the U.S. government.

But an official of the company that operates the Chicago Board of Trade, where wheat futures are traded, opposed such constraints and disputed the Senate probe's findings, as mentiond above from Charles Carey's accurate comments.

The idea of attempting to manipulate the market by the U.S. government and Democrats will fail, as the utopian idea of reducing risk is completely foolish and always fails, and the wheat and commodities markets overall will suffer.

Commodity indexes include futures contracts for delivery in different months. Commodity index traders sell financial instruments whose values rise and fall along with the value of the index on which they are located.

Commodity index traders acquire wheat futures to help offset their risk from selling the instruments to third parties. That pumps billions of dollars into the market and lifts demand and prices for wheat futures, the faulty results of the Senate investigation found.

Other related to the risk factors are also whining about the alleged discrepencies, as one person representing the American Bakers Association and the Sara Lee Corp said at the hearing, "Bakers cannot escape the impact. Today's volatility represents millions of dollars daily in undue financial risk."

What this disingenous bureaucrat doesn't say is this has always been the case, and the those that manage this risk factor are the ones who win. In the stimulous and spirit of bailing out company after company, those that can't compete are attempting to make it look like something unusual is happening, when in fact it has been the practice and way of doing business for a long time.

The one who knows about this the best is Charles Carey, vice chairman of CBOT owner CME Group Inc., and he concludes that the findings of the Senate report "are based on faulty economic analysis and a misunderstanding of basic market economics."

Just look at what the Democrats and Obama are doing to destroy America with its socialist and fascist policies, and you can easily understand how this group of politicians are among the most inexperienced and naive in American history; in both foreign and domestic policy, and they need to just shut up and let the free market work things out, which it always has done.

Wheat Markets

Friday, July 17, 2009

US Mint Launches 2009 Silver Proof Set

US Mint 18-coin 2009 Silver Proof Set

The US Mint just launched the 18-coin 2009 Silver Proof Set for $52.95. The annual set is a favorite with collectors, highlighted by the no longer available 2008 Silver Proof Set with sales of 774,874 as of Sunday.

The 2009 set is actually $8 more than last year’s offering, but it also includes an additional silver quarter and four bicentennial 2009 Lincoln cents specially struck in 95% copper, 3% zinc and 2% tin — the same alloy used in the original 1909 penny.

Similar to the fast-selling 2009 clad proof set that was issued by the Mint in June, the silver set contains collector proof versions of circulating 2009 coinage. All coins bear the "S" mint mark denoting they were minted at the United States Mint in San Francisco. Additionally, the dime, half-dollar, and six quarters are struck in lustrous 90 percent silver. The set has an intrinsic silver value of $19.99 at Friday’s silver spot price of $13.16 an ounce.

The following 18 coins are included in the set:
Four 2009-S Lincoln Cents: Lincoln Birthplace Penny, Lincoln Formative Years Penny, Lincoln Professional Life Penny and Lincoln Presidency Penny
2009-S Jefferson nickel
2009-S Roosevelt dime
Six 2009-S Quarters: DC quarter, Puerto Rico quarter, Guam quarter, American Samoa quarter, US Virgin Islands quarter and Northern Mariana Islands quarter
2009-S Kennedy half-dollar
2009-S Native American $1 Coin
Four 2009-S Presidential Dollar Coins: Harrison $1 Coin, Tyler $1 Coin, Polk Presidential $1 and Taylor Presidential $1

What are proof sets? As described by the Mint, they are:

"Proof coins are extraordinarily brilliant, with sharp relief and a mirror-like background. Their frosted, sculpted foregrounds give them a special cameo effect. Proof blanks are specially treated, polished and cleaned to ensure high-quality strikes. The blanks are then fed into presses fitted with specially polished dies and struck at least twice to ensure sharp relief."

2009 US Mint Silver Proof Set order information

No limits are in place and ordering is available directly on the US Mint page:

United States Mint 2009 Silver Proof Set™

Sets may also be purchased through the Mint’s toll-free number, 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). Hearing and speech-impaired customers may order by calling 1-888-321-MINT (6468).

The Mint indicates domestic orders will include a $4.95 shipping and handling charge.

US Mint 18-coin 2009 Silver Proof Set

Cash for Corn Cobs?

Cash for corn cobs a stupid idea

Using tax payer money for subsidizing farmers even more than the outrageous levels they're already being subsidized at is outrageous and criminal.

We don't need any more subsidies of corn, as the artificial market created through the nonsensical ethanol policy are detrimental and misguided, as wheat production suffers, and the poor around the world as well. That won't stop the outrage until food riots start again though, as prices surge above market levels in the socialist induced artificial market for corn and now corn cobs.

Cobs, the refuse left behind after harvest, are now plowed back into fields. But companies from California and South Dakota plan to start changing that by building two plants in Iowa, one to turn the material into ethanol and another to produce fertilizer.

Boyer already sells most of the corn from his farm to a traditional ethanol plant. Most ethanol in the U.S. is made from corn kernels.

But a $200 million plant being built by Sioux Falls, S.D.-based Poet Energy will make cellulosic ethanol, which comes from plant material such as cobs, wood chips and switchgrass. About two dozen cellulosic ethanol projects are being developed or built around the country, according to the Renewable Fuels Association.

The projects vary by region, with companies using whatever local crop is available. Louisiana and Florida companies, for instance, are using sugar cane, while one based in Oregon plans to convert poplar tress and wood chips into ethanol.

In Iowa, it's corn, and a switch from regular to cellulosic could mean more kernels are available for human food and livestock feed.

The push for new ways to produce cellulosic ethanol comes as many ethanol makers are struggling to turn a profit. They've had to drop prices to remain competitive as gas prices have fallen, but the cost of corn used to make ethanol has remained relatively high, said David Swenson, a researcher at Iowa State University.

Some of the largest producers have declared bankruptcy or been sold.

Poet spokesman Nathan Schock said the company hasn't yet figured out how much it will pay farmers, but it could be $30 to $60 per ton for corn stover, which includes cobs and some stalk. An average acre in Iowa yields about 1.5 tons of corn stover.

The company's payments to farmers could be supplemented by the federal government through the Biomass Crop Assistance Program.

Poet's plant in Emmetsburg, about 120 miles northwest of Des Moines, is expected to produce about 25 million gallons of ethanol per year when it opens in 2011. It could generate as much as $10 million per year in extra income for farmers.

Meanwhile, San Francisco-based SynGest, Inc., plans to build an $80 million facility in Menlo, about 40 miles west of Des Moines, that will be the first to make ammonia fertilizer from corn cobs.

The plant, expected to be completed by fall 2011, will process 130,000 tons of cobs per year into 50,000 tons of fertilizer, or enough for 100,000 acres of corn, SynGest CEO Jack Oswald said. Farmers would get about $50 per ton of cobs.

The company plans to market ammonia fertilizer to nearby farms as alternative to nitrogen fertilizer, which is made from oil. More than half the nation's supply of nitrogen fertilizer is imported, which drives up the price to farmers, Oswald said.

Poet expects $100 million in federal and state aid to build its plant, while SynGest has applied for $40 million in federal aid and additional state help.

Farmers said they'd like to trade their trash for cash, but most lack equipment to easily scoop up cobs. Prototypes for such machines are being built, but they could cost more than the cobs bring in. Boyer said a lot of questions remain.

Clark Bredahl, who raises corn, soybeans and cattle 320 acres near Greenfield, also said he'd need to figure out whether selling his cobs made economic sense.

This farmer is right. This is a bunch of ridiculous nonsense initiated by those attempting to fleece more taxpayers of their hard earned money in order to shore up a very stupid socialist corn and energy fiasco.

Cash for corn cobs a stupid idea

Commercial Biotech Modified Wheat

Biotech Modified Wheat

There can be no doubt that whether opposition to modified wheat like it or not, there will be commercialization sometime in the near future, as the alternative could never be acceptable.

Growing demand for wheat products and other foodstuffs will continue for some time, as emerging markets and growing middle classes increase their food consumption.

A lot of U.S. farmers have been positive about renewed efforts by biotech crop leader Monsanto Co to genetically modified wheat, but convincing world markets to embrace genetic alteration of the key food crop remains a big challenge to overcome.

Monsanto added fuel to a debate over biotech wheat on Tuesday when it announced it was buying WestBred LLC, a wheat germplasm specialist as a platform to develop higher-yielding biotech wheat that would be more tolerant of drought and require less nitrogen.

Along with Monsanto, rival seed technology companies such as Syngenta AG, BASF and Dow AgroSciences, a unit of Dow Chemical Co, are pouring resources into wheat development. Some companies are focusing on transgenic alterations using DNA from other species and some are manipulating genes already found in wheat.

Currently there is no biotech wheat grown on a commercial-scale anywhere in the world due to opposition from consumers and food industry players.

Most notably, Japan, one of the world's largest importers of wheat and a leading critic of past efforts to introduce genetically altered wheat, remains a steadfast opponent. Many European countries also continue to resist genetically modified crops.

Japan, which imports around 5.5 million tons of wheat each year, including about 3 million tons from the United States, is starting to acknowledge that there might be a valid argument for biotech wheat. But much work remains to be done before full acceptance, Tracy said.

U.S. Wheat is still laboring to get Japan and other countries to establish regulatory systems and tolerance levels that would allow for continued imports if biotech wheat is commercialized, he said.

Some U.S. farm groups also remain cautious of biotech wheat. They say conventional breeding can bring many of the same benefits without negative market consequences.

These critics also say biotech wheat work is aimed more at improving profits at corporations such as Monsanto than at helping farmers.

Quite a few consumer and environmental groups have concerns over introducing genes from other species into wheat could make it harmful for humans, and say it would be difficult to keep biotech wheat segregated from conventional wheat seed and products.

Monsanto, a global leader in biotech corn and soybeans, backed away from commercializing a herbicide-tolerant wheat five years ago as foreign buyers threatened boycotts.

Opponents say a biotech wheat introduction could still deal a significant blow to U.S. markets, recalling how U.S. corn lost European buyers when genetically modified corn was brought to the market.

But biotech wheat supporters say the global wheat crop needs a technological boost. They note that over the last few years, farmers have reduced wheat acreage in favor of more-profitable, easier-to-grow crops such as corn and soybeans.

They also point to fears mount about global food shortages and a rapid rise in world population. Just last year, shortages drove wheat prices to record highs, and prices remain historically high this year despite ample supplies.

Those factors have prompted corporations and researchers in the United States and Australia to increase development efforts in wheat.

Some farmer groups support commercialization of biotech varieties, saying they will have several years to address buyer fears before any biotech wheat is commercialized.

Either way, biotech modified wheat should go commercial in about 5 years if not sooner, as global conditions will force it upon us.

Biotech Modified Wheat

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Monsanto Looking to wheat

Monsanto Looking to wheat to drive share prices up

Looking for more ways to increase their share price, Monsanto is looking to wheat as a significant means of doing that, and recent aquisition of WestBred LLC is the first significant step in that direction, although it could take a decade before the investment pays off.

Knowing it needs a way to expand market share in wheat, Monsanto a Monsanto analyst, citing expectations that the company's $45 million acquisition of WestBred LLC won't add to earnings until 2016, and will add less than a dime a share by 2025.

Privately held WestBred, with offices in Montana, specializes in wheat germplasm, the genetic material of a seed.

Monsanto said about the investment that it will strengthen the future growth of Monsanto's seeds and traits platform; and allow farmers to benefit from the company's experience in drought-, disease- and pest-tolerance innovations.

This action by Monsanto, the world's biggest provider of seeds, signifies the company's re-entry to the wheat market, but will only increase earnings several years down the road at best.

Assuming Monsanto has a 20 percent share of the certified seed market by 2025, estimates are wheat could only add between 7 cents and 9 cents a share to earnings a share by 2025.

"Clearly, Monsanto needs to find ways to drive significant market share gains, wheat platform should not be accretive to earnings until 2016 or later."

Managing expectations, Monsanto is calling the acquisition a long-term investment that won't add to earnings until the middle or latter part of the next decade.

Monsanto Looking to wheat to drive share prices up

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Slow Start to Kansas Corn

Kansas Corn Crop

The Kansas corn crop has been doing pretty good so far this year even though there was an very late planting, but its late start has made the crop especially vulnerable to damage.

If everything goes right, Kansas farmers plant their corn by the first week in April. But rain kept farmers out of fields at the usual planting time, so a lot of of the state's corn was planted in late May and early June.

What that means is the crop will be pollinating during the hot, dry Kansas summer months. Another potential problem is an early freeze before the corn is ready for harvest could be devastating.

This week's crop condition report showed 68 percent of the corn in good to excellent condition, with 25 percent rated as fair. Only 7 percent of the crop got a poor to very poor rating.

Kansas farmers put 3.8 million acres into corn this season, compared to 3.85 million acres a year earlier.

Acroos the nation, the corn acreage of 87 million acres was up 1 percent from 2008. It was the second largest planted corn acreage since 1946, behind 2007, which set the record.

But some analysts remain nervous at the crop's late planting dates in major growing regions.

When the Agriculture Department came out with its acreage report last week the numbers of corn acres were higher than expected, said Mike Woolverton, grain marketing economist at Kansas State University. The market had anticipated a reduction in acreage from a year ago.

"The acres are there," he said. "But - and here's the kicker - and that is that the corn was planted late. Very late, some of it, and it may not develop to full maturity before frost. So we may end up with a short corn crop this year."

Kansas Corn Crop

India's Wheat Exports Limited by High Domestic Prices

India wheat exports down in fiscal year

In the midst of high local prices, projections are it will limit India's wheat and wheat product exports in the fiscal year ending March 2010, although the country has eased an earlier ban on exports this month to allow limited shipments.

On July 3, the federal government allowed three state-run firms - MMTC, STC and PEC - to export 300,000 tons each of wheat by March 31, 2010. In addition, private companies were allowed to export another 650,000 tons in wheat products, also by the same date.

But that is unlikely to lead to a surge exports.

"International prices are around $195 to $198/ton and Indian wheat costs around $232/ton," said Veena Sharma, secretary of Roller Flour Millers Federation (RFMF) of India.

She said exports are feasible only if international prices rise in the coming months.

"Unless there is a government subsidy of $30-$40/ton, (wheat exports are) not feasible," said Ajay Goyal, president of Maharashtra Roller Flour Millers Association (MRFMA).

However, the formal government order allowing the exports made it clear that "no subsidy will be given" to exporters.

India's federal government had imposed a ban on exports of wheat and wheat products in December 2007 to help curb inflation.

Since then, domestic wheat stocks have reached comfortable levels following two bumper crops and on carryover stocks from previous imports.

Even if some exports take place now, those could mainly be to neighboring countries, traders said.

"We may have to look to export to countries like Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives to save on freight costs," said a state-run trading firm official, who did not want to be identified.

However, industry officials ruled out the possibility of wheat exports to Pakistan because there is no supply shortage there.

Meanwhile, state procurement of wheat has been on the rise following higher support prices.

Farmers sold more wheat to government agencies, rather than to private companies, as the state-fixed price of 10,800 rupees ($223)/ton was attractive, and relatively higher than even global prices, traders said.

Latest government data showed local wheat purchases by government agencies have already touched a record 25.06 million tons since purchases started in April, and more was trickling into state granaries.

In its annual budget announcement Monday, the government said it would step up subsidized sale of grains to poor consumers in the coming months.

With the chance of wheat exports looking slim, industry officials were more hopeful about exports of wheat products such as flour and semolina.

"Although there is not so much of demand for wheat products in the global market now, there could be some demand coming from the Middle East," said A N Gupta, chairman of Wheat Products Promotion Society of India.

He said demand for value-added wheat products from India is likely to be much more than the demand for the grain itself in global markets.

India wheat exports down in fiscal year

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Silver Prices Going Up - Miners Respond

Silver prices going up

With numerous elements coming together at the right time, silver prices have been going up, and over the long term that should continue.

Those high silver prices have some Colorado miners hoping to rekindle the state's silver trade.

Several miners are working around the Poor Man silver mine in Idaho Springs. Silver prices are up, with futures in silver going up 27 percent just last month. Silver is now trading at about $15.60 an ounce.

The silver boom is caused by economic uncertainty and the fact that silver is used in solar panels. Some miners who lead tours of old Colorado gold mines say they're also poking around abandoned silver mines looking for new veins of silver.

The Denver Post reported Saturday that several people have filed applications with Colorado to explore or reactivate silver mines.

One of them is Al Mosch. His day job is leading gold-mine tours of the Phoenix Mine in Idaho Springs, but on his time off he pokes around the old silver site.

"I did some serious work in here in the 1980s when silver was at $12," Mosch said. "It crashed to $4 and stayed that way for many years. I just shut it down then."

His son, David, a former Colorado School of Mines professor, prospected a multimillion-dollar gold claim that put him in People magazine in 1975 at age 14. Al Mosch still has a claim in the silver mine, and David Mosch is working on new technology to extract silver.

"If he's successful," Al Mosch told the newspaper, "we could reopen a lot of these old claims."

The United States is the eighth-largest silver producer in the world. Most silver produced is used for industrial applications such as battery-making, or photography, or jewelry crafting, with alternative-energy uses on the rise.

Another silver prospector, Tom Treadwell, is working to clear some 30 tons of mud and debris left in Poor Man's main shaft. He said the enjoys looking for a new vein of silver to revive the state's silver mining industry.

Silver prices going up

Ethanol Will Raise Food Prices, Harm Environment


As usual, the U.S. government is turning a blind eye to the truth and facts, and continues down the disastrous path of subsidizing ethanol, which will continue to cause huge problems in the near and distant future.

The U.S. government's plan to increase its ethanol mandate will mean higher food prices and more harm to the environment, according to an impact study conducted for two groups that oppose the increase.

"We continue to believe the government's excessive support of the mature corn-based ethanol industry is simply wrong, since it means burning food for fuel," spokesman Gary Mickelson of Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale said in a statement after Bill Lapp, an agricultural analyst, released his study.

"This policy has contributed to higher corn prices, which have led to increased input costs for food makers — including independent livestock producers — and higher food prices for consumers," Mickelson said.

Corn is a major expense to poultry and beef producers, who want to reduce costs. Ethanol is a fuel additive distilled from plants. That distilling is a major market for corn that corn growers want to increase.

The federal government has a mandate that 10 percent of the fuel coming out of commercial gasoline pumps must be ethanol blended into the gasoline. The Environmental Protection Agency is considering a rule to increase that mandate to 15 percent. The government also maintains a tariff of 54 cents a gallon on imported ethanol.

A recent study from the Food and Agriculture Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri determined approval of 15-percent ethanol blends would increase corn prices by just $0.04 per bushel, ethanol advocates said in response to Lapp's study.

Increasing the ethanol mandate to 15 percent would require planting as much as 111 million acres of corn, according to Lapp's study. Ethanol would use almost half of the corn crop harvested by 2015. The Grocery Manufacturers Association commissioned the study. The U.S. corn acreage in 2008 was about 85 million acres, U.S. Department of Agriculture figures show.

"Corn and soybean meal are major production costs in the poultry industry, representing 47% of the cost of growing a chicken in 2008," Mickelson said. "Tyson's annual corn and soybean meal expenditures almost doubled from fiscal 2006 to fiscal 2008 and ethanol was a significant reason for the increase."

These arguments have been heard before, the pro-ethanol Renewable Fuels Association replied.

"Time and again, American farmers have answered the need for food, feed and renewable fuel," said association President Bob Dinneen in a statement. "Yet, time and again well-heeled groups seeking to derail the expansion of ethanol are trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

"Many will recall last summer's effort to finger ethanol as skyrocketing oil prices, a weak dollar, speculation, droughts, and global demand drove grain and food prices higher," Dinneen's statement said. "At the time, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Texas A&M University , and scores of other reputable analysts found such claims to be biased, overblown and outrageous. Even the Congressional Budget Office has looked at the issue and found that energy prices had 3 times the impact on the rising price of food than was the increased use of ethanol. Despite being thoroughly refuted last summer and lacking credibility on the issue, these groups are back at it again."

The ethanol industry is struggling even at its current 10 percent mandate. The fall in fuel prices from last year's record highs has severely hurt ethanol interests, industry figures show.

Ethanol's chief use in the United States is for a fuel additive. Ethanol in gasoline reduces carbon emissions and the price of gasoline, advocates say. However, ethanol plants are hard-pressed to make a profit when fuel prices are as low as they are now, according to industry figures -- even though gasoline prices remain higher than $2.50 a gallon at the pump.

At least 10 ethanol companies have sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the past year, Bloomberg Business News reports. Valero Energy Corp., the nation's largest independent oil refiner, became an ethanol plant owner in April by buying up seven Midwestern ethanol plants for pennies on the dollar compared to the original investment, Associated Press reports.

"You are going to see this become a trend ... especially with the government wanting to go green," Daniel Flynn, an analyst who follows the renewable fuels industry for Chicago-based Alaron Trading, told Associated Press about the Valero buy. "There are a lot of these ethanol plants hanging by a hair. This could be the perfect time for the big companies to step in."

The U.S. Energy Department reported last week that gasoline supplies climbed 3.39 million barrels to 205 million in the week ended June 12, the largest increase since Jan. 16, Bloomberg reported.

"If you're not eating that much hamburger, you're not using as much Hamburger Helper," Peyton Feltus, president of Randolph Risk Management in Dallas, told Bloomberg. "Until demand shows a sustainable increase, we can't hold these prices up" for ethanol, he said.

Ethanol advocates received another setback earlier this month when a U.S. House panel allowed the federal Environmental Protection Agency to take a wider look at the commodity's environmental impact.

The House Appropriations Committee defeated, 29-30, an amendment to bar the Environmental Protection Agency from using so-called indirect land-use change when measuring greenhouse gases from biofuels, Reuters news service reported.

The United States is the world's major supplier of corn. Critics of ethanol claim that the environment is damaged as other nations have to put more land into farming to produce food as more U.S. corn goes to ethanol. The legislation would allow the EPA to study the question and determine if this increase in farm acreage worldwide offsets or at least mitigates ethanol's environmental benefit.

"There is a huge negative effect here," said Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Missouri, who said an unfair EPA rule "could stop U.S. ethanol production in its tracks."

Scale of Consumption

Corn can produce about 200 gallons of ethanol per acre. If all the corn acreage in the United States were converted to fuel production with corn ethanol, the nation could produce 10 billion gallons of ethanol, the equivalent of about 8 billion gallons of gasoline per year, or about half a million barrels per day. The U.S. consumed about 20 million barrels of crude per day in 2007.


Friday, June 5, 2009

Gold News | Kinbaruri Gold Investment Deal with Glen Eagle Cancelled

Gold News

The proposed investment deal between Kinbauri Gold Corp and Gold Eagle Resources has been halted, as Kinbauri Gold said they didn't feel comfortable with the funding arrangements by Glen Eagle, and believed there wasn't enough funding available to make the deal happen.

Glen Eagle had in April offered to invest C$32 million in Kinbauri for a 45 percent stake in Kinbauri Espana unit -- which holds interests in the El Valle/Carles gold and copper project in northwestern Spain.

Separately, Glen Eagle said it believes that Kinbauri's termination is a breach of their deal and is considering its options.

Kinbauri, which is also the target of a takeover bid from Toronto-based Orvana Minerals Corp (ORV.TO), said it has decided to allow the matter to be determined in a court at the same time as the application brought by its shareholder Jaguar Financial Corp, scheduled to be heard on June 17.

Last month, Jaguar Financial, which owns 9 percent of Kinbauri, had approached the court, after Kinbauri rejected Orvana's offer of 55 Canadian cents a share as its deal with Glen Eagle was on the verge of completion.

In a statement on Friday, Kinbauri said a special committee continues to evaluate the takeover bid from Orvana Minerals, consider other alternatives and will make a recommendation to the board in the near future.

Gold News

Ethanol News | House for E-trading Agriculture and Ethanol Extended by CME

Ethanol News

CME Group Inc announced on Friday it would expand electronic trading of agricultural contracts by 75 minutes, effective July 1, in a move aimed at further boosting business on that platform.

"It allows customers based in Europe more time to trade during trading hours that are most convenient for them," said CME Group spokesperson Mary Haffenberg.

CME said it would extend electronic trading on July 1 by one hour and 15 minutes to 7:15 a.m. CDT (1215 GMT). Electronic trading currently begins at 6 p.m. (2300 GMT) and ends at 6 a.m. (1100 GMT).

The longer hours will be for contracts including corn, wheat, soybeans and ethanol.

"They're trying to capture more business. There are markets open that time of the day and they are meeting the competition," a trader said.

A number of traders said it was another step by the CME, the world's largest derivatives exchange, to eventually offer electronic trading 24 hours a day.

"The exchange thinks it will expand volume, and it might, but I don't think by a lot. But it's another step in their quest toward 24-hour trading," another trader said.

A CME trading floor source said the reason the CME will stop trading at 7:15 a.m. is because of the monthly release of sensitive U.S. Department of Agriculture crop information at 7:30 a.m. CDT.

Ethanol News

Wheat | Durum Wheat Prices Rising Slower than Spring Wheat

Wheat Prices

Durum wheat hasn't followed the trend of its spring wheat counterpart, as it lages behind the higher prices spring wheat have brought so far this year.

Though some local cash durum prices have risen slightly they have not risen at the same level as spring wheat.

“Unfortunately durum hasn't enjoyed the same price increases as hard red spring wheat,” Olson said. “In fact, durum cash prices around the state are less than hard red spring wheat prices in some cases.”

Local cash bids for durum are anywhere from $6.75 to $7.25, which is just slightly higher than a couple weeks ago.

One of the major reasons spring wheat prices have appreciated so much recently is because planting is so far behind the usual pace. And although durum planting is also behind the normal pace, it is not as far behind as spring wheat.

In North Dakota, 69 percent of the durum crop has been planted compared to an average of 77 percent - just eight percentage points behind. Spring wheat in North Dakota, on the other hand, is 79 percent complete versus an average of 95 percent - a difference of 16 percent.

In one week, durum planting progress jumped by over 40 percent due to the good planting conditions the week of May 18-24.

In Montana, about 70 percent of the durum crop has been planted. That compares to an 84 percent average.

Olson pointed out that emergence for durum is also behind due to cooler than normal conditions this spring, but the recent warmer temperatures should help promote emergence and crop development.

The U.S. desert southwest durum crop is getting ripe and harvest is expected to begin soon.

“Right now about half the crop is mature,” Olson said. “There doesn't appear to be any major issues with that crop and we're expecting to see both good quality and good yields.”

To the north, Canadian producers are also experiencing a late planting season, but they have other concerns as well.

“In Canada there's actually some concerns that it's getting too dry in some of the major durum producing regions, so that obviously could impact planted acres and production,” Olson said.

In Europe, the only production concern is that wet weather and poor crop conditions have cut the estimate for durum production in italy from 147 million bushels to 127 million. North Africa has seen “near perfect growing conditions” so their production will be well above last year's levels, according to Olson.

U.S. durum exports lately haven't been overly supportive for prices either.

Wheat Prices

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Wheat News | Wheat Inventories in India to Remain Huge


Wheat inventories in India are likely to remain large given the expectation of another bumper crop this year and limited export opportunities, said the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nation in its latest report.

Inventory in India, another major producer and stockholder, is forecast to remain unchanged at a five-year high of 17.8 million tonnes. But another bumper year for wheat in 2010 may increase the inventory further, said the report. The forecast assumes significance as the country has not opened wheat for exports despite excessive supplies in the domestic market.

Since, the United Progressive Alliance government has been formed without any alliance pressure and most importantly, the inflation remains under control, trade sources estimate the government may allow wheat exports in near future primarily because of global trade deficit.

FAO’s first forecast for wheat trade in 2009-10 stands at 114 million tonnes, down as much as 8 per cent, or 10 million tonnes from the estimated 2008-09 record volume.

Wheat export was suspended in May 2007 to control inflation that shot up over 13 per cent. The government also suspended futures trading in wheat due to the fear of price rise on traders’ speculation.

Meanwhile, FAO has estimated India’s wheat production to decline marginally by one per cent to 77.6 million tonnes in 2009 on favourable climatic condition throughout the season.

The specialised agency of the United Nations, which leads international efforts to defeat hunger, has forecast global wheat output to decline by 4 per cent to 655.8 million tonnes in 2009 compared with 684.6 million tonnes in the previous year.

The agency estimates total course grains’ output to remain rangebound at 37.8 million tonnes this calendar year compared with 38 million tonnes in the last year.

But, the global coarse grains production is likely to decline by 4 per cent at 1,098.5 million tonnes this year compared with 1,142.3 million tonnes in the previous year.

The 2008 paddy season has just been completed with the harvesting of secondary crops in Asia. Boosted by excellent results of these crops, global paddy production is now estimated at 689 million tonnes, equivalent to 460 million tonnes of milled rice, well above earlier expectations and 4.3 per cent more than in 2007.

But the sector’s attention is now turning to the 2009 season, which is already well advanced in all but the critically important south-eastern Asian region, where farmers are awaiting the imminent arrival of the monsoon rains to plant their crops.

Preliminary information on plantings and crop development over the 2009 season has been favourable. As a result and assuming a normal rainfall pattern in Asia in the coming months, world production in 2009 could gain a further 1 per cent and reach 696 million tonnes (465 million tonnes, milled equivalent), FAO said.

The relatively moderate increase expected in 2009 reflects less attractive prospects for producer returns. However, in spite of financial constraints, many governments have maintained their support to the sector through input subsidies, investment programmes and direct price incentives, which, barring any major setback, is likely to sustain production growth.

Trade sources estimate India’s rice output to remain rangebound at 147 million tons in 2009 provided monsoon arrives in time and distributed evenly.


Corn News | Corn Production and Ending Stocks Projections Lowered by Analysts

Corn News

Ahead of the soon to be released USDA supply and demand report, McHenry, Illinois based analysts Allendale Inc. expect the Ag Department to lower its production and new crop ending stocks estimates for corn.

Allendale sees 2009/10 corn stocks at 1.015 billion bushels and production at 11.935 billion bushels because of delayed planting. Allendale also sees the USDA cutting the average yield estimate by 2 bushels per acre. In May, the USDA put corn production at 12.090 billion bushels and new crop stocks at 1.145 billion bushels. Allendale pegs old crop corn ending stocks at 1.610 billion bushels, up 10 million from May.

Allendale expects USDA to leave the soybean production guess unchanged from May at 3.195 billion bushels, but sees old crop stocks at 99 million bushels due to strong demand; the USDA's May 2008/09 ending stocks estimate was 130 million bushels. Also, Allendale sees 2009/10 soybean stocks at 243 million bushels, compared to 230 million in May's update.

2009 U.S. wheat production is projected at 1.993 billion bushels, compared to May's estimate of 2.026 billion. Winter wheat is placed at 1.492 billion bushels, with hard red at 864 million, soft red at 417 million and white winter at 211 million. In May, the USDA had wheat production at a total of 2.026 billion bushels, with the winter crop at 1.502 billion, hard red at 871 million, soft red at 422 million and white at 208 million.

The USDA will also be issuing updated world supply and demand figures. The reports are due out Wednesday, June 10 at 7:30 AM Central.

Corn News

Silver News | ETF Securities Has Record 20 Million Ounces of Silver to Back Up ETF Commodity

Silver News

ETF Securities said on Thursday the amount of metal it holds to back its silver exchange-traded commodity rose to a record 20.064 million ounces on June 3, while its palladium holdings also hit an all-time high.

ETFS Physical Silver (PHAG.L) has added 2.3 million ounces or 12.7 percent to its holdings in the last month, according to data released by the company.

Holdings of its ETFS Physical Palladium product meanwhile rose 13,677 ounces on Wednesday, lifting them 4.7 percent to a record 304,635 ounces.

Exchange-traded funds, which issue securities backed by physical stocks of a particular metal, have represented a major source of demand for precious metals in recent years.

Silver News

Ethanol News | EPA Report Says Ethanol Harder on Climate than Gasoline - Politicians Throw Fit

Ethanol News

There is so much proof that the ethanol debacle needs to end, that even the report by the EPA that ethanol is worse on the environment than gasoline hasn't stopped politicians trying to get taxpayer dollars into their states from thowing a tantrum.

We’ve entered another ugly battle in the ethanol wars. The EPA released an analysis last month purporting that corn-based ethanol is actually worse for the climate than gasoline on a lifecycle basis, and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) released a ruling that will effectively exclude corn-based ethanol from California’s Renewable Fuels Standard for that reason.

The ethanol industry and its supporters are livid (who cares). House Agriculture Chairman Collin Peterson (D-MN), a longtime ethanol supporter, threw a fit during a recent hearing and now is threatening to block climate legislation over the new rules. "I don't care,” he exclaimed during a hearing over EPA’s draft rule, “Even if you fix this. I don't trust anybody anymore -- I’ve had it." Ethanol opponents are cheering the agencies' decisions and urging them to look at ethanol under worst-case scenarios.

What is sad about this spat is that while everyone is arguing over whether ethanol is bad, no one is talking about how to make it better. The worst impacts of ethanol occur far from Iowa or Washington in the forests that are burned down to respond to added demand for cropland.

Deforestation results in almost 20 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, and it will not be solved through tired finger pointing. This problem is hard but solvable if we focus on the systemic drivers of slash-and-burn agriculture.

A quick primer on the latest wrinkle from the EPA and CARB: Both reached damning conclusions about the impact of ethanol based on complex economic modeling, but the basic logic behind their analysis is simple:

• Using farmland for ethanol diverts land from being used for food production, driving up price and demand
• Higher prices and demand encourage farmers in the developing world to plant more crops
• Developing world farmers clear and burn forests so they can plant more crops
• Clearing forest for cropland releases a tremendous amount of greenhouse gas
• Thus, devoting cropland to ethanol production leads to increases in greenhouse gas emissions

The ethanol industry and its supporters don’t dispute this logic, but claim two problems with the agencies’ approach: (1) The science behind this economic modeling is too new and imprecise, and (2) biofuels are being held to a much tougher standard than other climate solutions. Their opponents hold that the science is sound, and that other low-carbon technologies simply don't have these massive "indirect land-use" problems.

Yet this debate is just so much fiddling while Rome (or maybe Indonesia) burns. The crux of the problem is not in how we measure the impact of ethanol, it is that developing world farmers clear and burn forests so they can plant more crops. Ethanol is just one of the pressures that speed the disastrous destruction of these forests. The rest is just an accounting exercise.

Farmers in the developing world burn forests because it is the most economical, and often only, choice they have. They often can’t afford fertilizers, equipment or high-yield seeds. They have limited access to informational tools like education, soil tests and precision agriculture technology that would allow them to produce more crops in the same place. Without these resources, the only choice is to find new land.

Moreover, there is little or no barrier to slash-and-burn agriculture. Logging roads often give farmers access to virgin forests. Not enough forests are protected, and where they are, many governments lack the resources or the will to enforce conservation laws.

The solutions to these problems are not easy, but models exist. Technology transfer and economic development programs can increase crop yields and reduce the real costs of agricultural technology. A global agreement on REDD (reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation) could protect forests and provide payments from a global trust fund as an alternative to chopping trees down.

In order to reduce the lifecycle impact of ethanol, the industry needs to do more than cry foul on these regulations. It needs to be engaged in finding solutions to reduce the pressure to clear land for agriculture. A forward-thinking producer would be lobbying for global forest protection and working with partners in the agricultural industry to support technology transfer to the rural poor.

Meanwhile, ethanol's detractors need to admit that producers can't bear this burden alone, and that failing to compromise with such a politically powerful industry will lead only to delay and more poorly designed policies.

Here's a modest proposal: Congress lets the ethanol industry off the hook for its indirect upstream effects, and the industry agrees that some of its massive subsidies be diverted to programs that protect forests and give farmers options beyond burning them down. Putting more resources toward these programs will not only protect forests from the indirect effects of ethanol, but also the threats of logging, development or other future pressures on agricultural growth.

We will see many more of these fights in the coming years as industries, activists and policymakers argue over who has to bear the burden for indirect, unanticipated environmental and social damages. We need a systemic approach that tackles the problems on the ground, instead of shifting the blame around.

Noam Ross is a senior analyst at GreenOrder, an LRN Company. GreenOrder is a strategy and management consulting firm that has helped leading companies turn sustainability into business value since 2000.

Of course there aren't any climate problems in the first place, and to listen to Ross attempt to apply logic, confusion and reason to the made-up crisis, just shows how far many will go when decisions and conclusions take money out of their greedy pockets.

Ethanol News

Gold News | Gold Prices Rise As Investors Look to Increasing Demand

Gold News

Optimism about the economy showed through in the commodities markets recently as investors sent prices for gold, oil and grains higher on the belief that demand for basic materials will soon rebound. I think they're right, although no one can predict the timing of any market.

There is "a general feeling that maybe we're starting to stabilize here in terms of the economy," said Stephen Platt, an analyst with Archer Financial Services in Chicago. "There is some hope that the demand might come back."

Surprisingly positive data on the jobs market renewed hopes that the economy is recovering. The Labor Department said Thursday that the number of unemployed workers continuing to receive benefits unexpectedly dropped last week for the first time in 20 weeks. New jobless claims also declined, falling to 621,000 from 625,000, nearly matching analysts' estimates.

Unemployment has been one of the most closely watched gauges of the economy's health throughout the recession. Rising job losses affect vast areas of the economy, including consumer spending, retail sales and the housing market. The report came a day ahead of the government's crucial tally of monthly job losses.

A slightly weaker dollar also helped spur buying of commodities, particularly gold and oil. A weaker dollar makes both gold and oil attractive investments. By buying gold, investors insulate themselves from the risks of inflation, while oil becomes cheaper for foreign buyers when the dollar falls.

On Thursday, the dollar traded mostly lower against other major currencies as central banks in Europe made the decision to keep their benchmark interest rates at historically low levels, signaling a cautious stance on the economy.

Low interest rates are a tool governments often use to revitalize the economy by lowering borrowing costs, but they can also undermine a country's currency. The Federal Reserve also has kept its benchmark interest rate very low — near zero — as it works to boost the U.S. economy, which has put pressure on the dollar.

The dollar has declined steadily since early March as the outlook on the economy improves. This leads investors to look for more traditionally risky assets like stocks in which to park their money.

Gold for August delivery rose $16.70 to $982.30 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, erasing nearly all of the previous day's 2 percent loss.

Other metals also rose. July silver jumped 58.5 cents to $15.8950 an ounce, while July copper futures added 8.9 cents to $2.3010 a pound.

Gold News

Oil Business and News | American Energy Resources to Begin Drilling in New Oil Reserve

Oil Business and News

Declining consumer demand has taken a toll on many in the oil and gas industry.

Reports the oil refiner Valero Energy is expecting a second quarter loss because of the lackluster demand.

Earlier in the year when the price of oil settled near $35 per barrel many oil and gas services companies had to forgo new investments because of the low price and weak demand. Oil is now hovering near $68 a barrel with MarketWatch reporting a Goldman Sachs estimate that oil prices will hit $85 by year end.

But one Colorado-based oil and gas exploration company is moving forward with a new project.

American Energy Resources announced plans to drill from a newly discovered secondary oil reserve in Lane County, Kansas. The well is known as Doyle's Dome #7 and is expected to produce over 200 barrels a day and remain active for 25 years or longer.

"This is the second largest well American Energy Resources has ever drilled," said Don Allen, president and founder of American Energy Resources. "Our use of 3-D seismic mapping technology allows the company to hit 'sweet spots' with multiple pay zones."

Oil Business and News

Friday, April 24, 2009

Gold Company | Newmont Mining Corporation

Newmont Mining Corporation

Newmont Mining Corporation is one of the largest gold mining companies in the world, and was founded back in 1921. Just four years later it was listed for the first time on a public exchange.

Based in Denver, Colorado in the U.S., Newmont employs somewhere around 34,000 workers and/or contractors, with most of those in their base operations in Australia, Indonesia, Ghana, Peru and the United States.

Newmont Mining also has significant presence in Canada, New Zealand and Mexico, along with a number of smaller operations scattered around the world.

While mining jobs have slowed down some, the company still looks like it'll remain steady for workers going forward, as expectations that gold prices will rise before the year is out, and that could also spur more hiring from the gold mining company.

Smaller gold mining companies have been struggling, and while Newmont mining stock hasn't done much, there is a lot of hope it'll move in major way soon.

Newmont has impressed a number of people, and so much so that they're the only gold company at this time listed on the S&P 500 index, as well as the first gold mining company to be chosen to be a part of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.

When you think of a Newmont mine, you're thinking Newmont gold, and while that's primarily true, there are Newmont mines that are in the copper production business, mostly in the Batu Hijau operations in Indonesia.

At this time the Indonesian government has put a value on the Newmont Mining Corporation's unit in the country at $4.9 billion. Indonesia is seeking to acquire a portion of Newmarks' unit, and is in negotiations to possibly buy the entire division.

For the end of December 31, 2008, the mining company had an estimated 85 million equity ounces in reserve, and had an aggregate land position of about 38,840 square mile, or 100,600 square kilometers.

Going forword, the Newmont gold mining company is strongly positioned to take advantage of any upwards move in the price of gold.

Newmont Mining Corporation

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Silver Companies | Silver Wheaton in Tough Economic Times

Silver Wheaton

There has been a lot of significance attached to the price of silver and the price ratio of silver to gold, which usually stands historically at about 20 to 1. For some time now it has hovered at around 70 ounces of silver for every ounce of gold, and that has many silver investors thinking there is an inevitable rise that is bound to come.

An number of silver industry and silver stock watchers believe Silver Wheaton may be in a strong position to take advantage of this expected move, as its business practices lend themselves to being strong as a silver investment.

One such practice of the silver miner is to buy a percentage of silver that comes from other silver mines, and has significant reserves that are up 24 percent year over year.

So the Silver Corp has a record amount of silver in reserve, standing at 429.7 million ounces. If Silver Wheaton could have even more ounces on hand, with increases possibly being as high as 33 percent and attributable measured and indicated silver resources increased to 213.5 million ounces.

With the endless, careless government spending, there are increasing inflationary pressures that are expected and sure to push up the prices of silver and gold, and more than likely Silver wheaton will climb with it.

Another postive factor for the company is investors are expected to remain actively in pursuit of the metal, and should be net buyers of silver this year, with projections of about 182 million ounces exchanging hands. Global record sales of silver stands at 222.2 million ounces which were acquired in 1980.

As far as industrial demand, it fell in 2008 to 701.2 million ounces, a decline of 3.1 percent from the 724 ounces in 2007. Higher silver prices and a tougher economic climate were a major part of the fall in fabrication demand in 2008.

In 2009, projections are silver demand will plunge to 641 million ounces because of countries and companies cutting back on buying.

Much of the product demand for items using silver like photography, silverweare, batteries, jewelry and electronics are expected to continue to be slow, putting downward pressure on demand.

Taking all of that into account, it seems its more the investors that will decide silver prices this year, more than industrial demand. If tough economic times and uncertainty remain for some time, investors will continually look for safety in both silver and gold. That should remain for the rest of 2009 and into next year.

For last year, overall silver supply is estimated to have risen to over 800 million ounces.

Last year silver mining production increased by around 14 million ounces over the year before, while secondary supply rose by about 11 million ounces. That could rise even more under the present conditions. As of 2008, silver investors were net buyers for the third straight year, and that should continue. In 2008 net buyers of silver were at the highest levels since the early part of the 1980s.

Again, all of this should play well to the positioning of Silver Wheaton and its usual practices to take advantage of this. They and other silver stocks should do well over the next year or so.

Just recently Silver Wheaton President and CEO John Shanahan, who was accepted in that position after serving an interim stint with the company since September 10, announced they have exercised a participation right to acquire 3,855,558 common shares of Revett Minerals, bringing its total percentage of shares owned in Revett to 16.4 percent.

Shanahan says he looks at it as a solid bakcing of Revett and a commitment over the long haul to increase production at the Troy Mine, while increasing the exploration stage at the Rock Creek project.

Silver Wheaton

Friday, April 3, 2009

Corn | Jim Rogers Macquarie Agriculture Index Fund

Jim Rogers has been an agriculture bull for some time, and has now combined that favorite investment sector of his in a new commodities index fund also including China, along with agriculture. Rogers has partnered with with Australia's Macquarie Funds group to create the new Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index.

Rogers' contention for some time has been that no matter what happens in the global economy, and what may be the demand for the near and far future, agriculture is going to play an increasingly big role in the world, and those investing in the sector will do well in the years ahead.

Put the expanding Chinese middle class together with the growing population and economy, and you see the potential the Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index fund represents.

so even with the continuing challenges facing the global economy, agricultural commodities will continue to be in high demand, especially those targeting the Asian market.

Commodity investors will be glad to know the difference between the Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index and other Indices. In this case, the agriculture index fund will focus on the actual consumption of food and the price fluctuations connected to that, rather than simply tracking production, which doesn't guarantee anything will be consumed or sold.

With the price of food being undoubtedly tied to the Chinese people, anything targeting that market should enjoy bellwhether status in relationship to global food prices, and so an index fund in relationship to Jim Rogers should do well in tracking the price fluctuations of food in the densely populated country. It should rank among one of the top hedge funds in the near and far future.

Another benefit to those marketing and managing financial products to invest in, is the ability to create innovative products linked to the overall focus of the commodity index fund. How that happens is the exchange-traded futures contracts or commodity ETF future contracts it uses on physical commodities.

This is a great opportunity for those who believe in the overall competence of Jim Rogers to get involved in something he's studied and watched closely, as well as believes in passionately. In that sense, connecting to a hot commodity market like China with a agricultural raw materials fund will be a great way to profit for those interested in investing in a commodity or commodity index fund or ETF.

As Jim Rogers has said over the last several years, we can count on the current commodity bull market to continue for years, and the existing economic crisis will only extend it longer, even if there is some short term pain and slowdown.

As Rogers continues to hammer home, food will be eaten and in demand no matter what else happens. And with that demand to be no larger than in China, it positions Rogers, commodity investors, and the Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index for long term investing success.

We must keep watching commodity hedge funds and commodity etfs which specifically target agriculture. With agriculture prices plunging in 2008, they will turn around sooner or later, and investing in a commodity index fund like Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index should provide a solid return when those prices start to climb again.

Demand for food isn't just going to climb linearily, it will climb exponentially, as even with population-control efforts, it continues to climb in the Asian region had significant pace. Food demand and prices will follow that continuing trend.

The primary strategy of the Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index is to track consumer consumption patterns in China, and how food prices respond to them. That's the underlying foundation of the fund. This is what gives the fund an excellent chance of bringing a high level of return for those looking at the agricultural commodity sector.

As mentioned earlier, more than any other people in the world in the years ahead, the Chinese will more than anybody determine the food priorities and prices globally, and the new agriculture commodity fund from Jim Rogers should move up with that reality.

While we know that past success doesn't in any way guarantee future results, the past performance of Jim Rogers, especially when working with George Soros and the amazingly successful Quantum Fund, which gained about 4,200 percent over a ten-year-period, does give an indication that he knows what he's doing, and does his homework when it comes to supply and demand of raw materials.

And Rogers now sees agriculture as the major point of demand for probably decades, and so the fund was created.

The new Macquarie and Rogers China Agriculture Index fund should be an important investment vehicle in the hot commodities hedge fund arena.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Myth of Peak Oil

It's sometimes hard to look at all the nonsense being perpetuated by people with agendas, as it seems there's almost nothing important any more that isn't politicized in some way, and so ultimately lied about. Gold is one of those things, and another major one, which I want to talk about is peak oil.

So by definition, what is peak oil? It simply means that oil that was relatively easy to reach and extract has been depleted. The question then becomes if that is in reality the case. The answer is absolutely no. The peak oil myth is just that - a myth. That doesn't mean there won't come a day when that becomes the reality, it's just that it isn't the case now, and won't be any time soon.

So why is the myth continually perpetuated? Because it takes the eyes and minds of people off of why oil prices sometimes surge and the caused behind it. The major reason there's the beginnings of an artifially induced oil peak is because of consequences of political actions put into law which forbids access and drilling on easy-to-drill and extract oil. Think of Alaska and off the coastlines of the U.S. There are billions of barrels of oil available, yet not allowed to be drilled for because of pressure from radical environmentalists and lawmakers looking to curry favor from the media which loves this type of idiocy.

This is mostly brought about from the endless introduction of fear as the key tool used by these liars in order to manipulate public policy to their hidden agendas.

These manipulators even try to ask the types of irrelevant questions that herd people a certain way so, again, they don't look at the facts, realities and agendas behind them. For example, they use terms like what is going to happen "after oil." Or other statements like "surviving peak oil," or "life after peak oil. The implication is that peak oil is reality that we must now deal with, rather than the fact that there's absolutely no basis for concern at this time if the current regulations were removed. That's what is trying to be hidden from the minds of people.

Besides the obvious billions of barrels of oil in Alaska and off American coastlines, where else is there oil available? In the United States itself there is enough oil in shale to make it the largest oil reserves in the world; far beyond what Saudi Arabia has. That is a proven fact. There are of course also have billions of barrels of oil in the Canadian sands area, which will also last for decades. These are just a couple of areas which don't include many other areas in the world.

So why imply an oil shortage, what is the hidden agenda behind it. Some of it is philosophical, as ignorant people literally think of the earth as their mother, and to drill into their mother is actually hideous in their warped minds. Another reason for asserting oil depletion is in order to promote agendas related to radical environmentalists and their business allies, who want to try to cash in on the misguided focus on what is called "alternative energy," where billions of dollars are being wasted because of the fear mongering people who make it look like the world is falling in order to gain access to public and private money to further their purposes. It's nothing more than that.

There's no oil crisis, we're not close to losing easy access to oil supplies.

While I do agree that oil prices will eventually have to go up, especially until ways of figuring out how to extract oil from shale is made cheaper, there is still so much oil available that to say we're in any type of crisis is dishonest at best, and ignorant at worst.

Even new ways of scouring the ocean floors and seeing what lies beneath the salty residue has resulted in billions of barrels of oil being discovered by Brazil, and their just getting going on that, as Petrobras continues to look for more deposits. Granted, it's far below the ocean floor and will be more costly - at this time - to extract, is does show how much oil there is that hasn't been discovered yet, and how much would be avaiable when restrictions on drilling for oil on coastlines are lifted.

The world oil supply is fine, and world oil reserves in a solid place. Oil consumption for now has cut back, as economic weakness causes consumers to drive less and stay around home more. That will extend signficantly the amount of oil available and its use.

So you don't have to worry or be fearful over the dishonest assertions by those with private agendas. There's billions and billions of barrels of oil available, it's just not being allowed to be drilled for because of existing laws which eventually will be withdrawn when real pressures from the population make it politically dangerous to keep people from cheaper oil and gas prices.