In the main commodity markets, nothing is doing better than palladium this year.
The metal is up 30 percent, beating 33 other raw materials, including lean hogs and aluminum, tracked by Bloomberg. On Friday, prices surged as much as 7.9 percent to a 16-year high of $928.36 an ounce as some traders were said to scramble to get hold of physical supplies.
Palladium, which is mainly used to curb harmful emissions from gasoline vehicles, has rallied on expectations that supply will lag demand for a sixth straight year. It’s now almost as expensive as platinum for the first time since 2001, helped by Volkswagen AG’s emissions scandal two years ago that has prompted consumers to switch from diesel to gasoline cars.
“The fundamentals in palladium are among the best in all the commodities,” said Rene Hochreiter, an analyst at Noah Capital Markets Pty Ltd. in Johannesburg. “It could easily overtake platinum in the near-term. It feels as if the rally has got legs.”
Here are four other charts on palladium’s advance:
Mine production hasn’t been able to keep up with usage since 2012, partly because of rising car sales and stricter emissions limits. While stockpiled metal probably helped feed consumer demand in recent years, that source of supply may now be running out, according to Caroline Bain, chief commodities economist at Capital Economics Ltd.