Commodities

China onions' prices spike in Japan after pesticide found

TOKYO -- The import price of Chinese-grown onions is surging in Japan on reduced supplies after excessive amounts of an agrochemical were detected in them last month. The price now stands at about 80 yen (76 cents) per kilogram, up 50% from July ...

  • Global supply glut puts coal producers under pressure

    BANGKOK -- It has been a tough year for commodities, particularly large-volume bulk commodities, but none face as much of a challenge as coal. Prices for both thermal coal and metallurgical coal for steelmaking have languished for the past two to...

  • Expected glut pushes iron ore price to 2-year low

    TOKYO -- The spot price for iron ore has dropped to a near two-year low of $89 per ton from mounting anticipation of a supply glut, as a leading Australian miner prepares to boost output. The spot rate for the benchmark 62%-grade iron ore has sli...

  • Gold: A tale of two countries

    TOKYO -- People in India are buying more gold even as demand levels off in China, which overtook its neighbor last year to become the world's biggest consumer of the precious metal. In India, gold sells at a premium, partly determined by domestic...

  • China loses its luster as big cotton producer

    TOKYO -- China's presence as a major cotton producer is diminishing due to the low quality of its cotton and scaled-back production. The country is the world's largest producer of cotton, but the quality of Chinese cotton is lower than that of th...

  • China's copper appetite becoming difficult to assess

    TOKYO -- Although China is increasing its imports of copper ore, it is difficult to gauge the impact on global copper prices and the country's outlook for copper demand. Cooper prices at the London Metal Exchange took turbulent swings when China ...

  • Short supply sends frozen shrimp prices higher

    TOKYO -- Frozen shrimp prices are on the rise as supplies have taken a hit from a disease outbreak in Thailand and other producer countries. These high prices are also due in part to purchases made by U.S. and European buyers who bought on a temporar...

  • Smartphone demand breaks fall in NAND memory prices

    TOKYO -- Large-lot sales prices of NAND flash memory chips stayed flat for a third consecutive month in July, thanks to brisk demand from smartphone manufacturers. The benchmark price of 64-gigabit chips came to $3.05. NAND prices had been on the...

  • Petroleum product prices fall sharply in Asia amid relaxing supply-demand balance

    TOKYO -- Petroleum products prices are tumbling in Asia as the supply-demand balance relaxes due to a supply glut coupled with falling crude oil prices. As such, prices of petroleum products, such as kerosene and gas oil, have been declining in recen...

  • Crude oil futures trading losing steam

    TOKYO -- The crude oil futures market is reaching a turning point. Tighter regulations in the U.S. and Europe are driving investment banks and hedge funds out of commodities trading, and small movements in crude oil prices have been preventing future...

  • Singapore seeking to become LNG trade hub

    Singapore is trying to claim the title of the Asia hub for liquefied natural gas business, with an aim of invigorating trading and in turn bringing down prices. An LNG terminal situated on Jurong Island has received some 30 carriers originating f...

  • China's erratic rubber inventory leaves market in confusion

    TOKYO -- Speculative trading has caused China's natural rubber inventory to yo-yo, depriving rubber farmers and distributors across the globe of a yardstick for making decisions on their production and procurement activities. Such trading appears to ...

  • Crude sinks on weak demand in Europe, Asia

    TOKYO -- Prices of crude oil are falling amid sluggish European and Asian demand as well as stable supplies in the Middle East. The price of Asian benchmark Dubai crude declined $1.90 to $100.70 per barrel Friday, its lowest level in 13 months. I...

  • China's synthetic fiber makers make joint production cuts

    TOKYO -- Raw materials for synthetic fiber have been rising in price over the past few months as Chinese makers start to cut production. An official in charge of raw materials for synthetic fiber at a major Japanese chemical maker said he welcom...

  • Condensates locked at high prices in Asia

    TOKYO -- Prices for condensates, superlight oil recovered mainly from natural gas reservoirs, are stuck in high gear in Asia amid growing speculation that its demand as a petrochemical industry feedstock will increase. Condensate prices typically...

  • China loses its hankering for gold

    TOKYO -- Chinese gold imports have been shrinking at a rapid pace since March. There are numerous causes, including a crackdown on shady loans that use gold as collateral as well as sluggish demand for gold bullion and jewelry. China surpassed In...

  • Iron ore giants see downturn as opportunity

    BANGKOK -- These are tougher times for the world's iron ore miners. After four years of record prices, the commodity has fallen back to earth and is now selling at $95 per ton, down from $135 at the start of the year, as China's economy - which consu...

  • Japan's once-fading jewelry market finds buyers in India

    TOKYO -- Japan's market for precious metals and gemstones is seeing an influx of buyers from India, as well as China and other Asian countries. While the Japanese market for precious metals used to be the world's second-largest, after the U.S.,...

  • Iron ore prices supported by speculative demand in China

    TOKYO -- International iron ore prices are resisting further declines, but speculative demand in China caused by financial transactions is adding unpredictability to the market. The benchmark Australian iron ore price dropped by 34% to $89 per to...

  • Frozen-bonito prices jump on weaker hauls, tougher rules

    TOKYO -- International prices for frozen bonito used in canned tuna and dried bonito flakes have risen sharply in recent months because of poor catches and fishing regulations intended to ensure the conservation of fish stocks. Prices have soared...