Last 5 posts


Welcome to Lord Copper

Opinions about lots of things - mostly related to the worlds' metal markets

Windfall tax......

04 May 2022

Well, here we go: BP announces a hefty profit and the siren call is raised - “let there be a windfall tax on energy company profits!” Maybe there is some logic in that, but we’ll get to that in a moment. First, just let’s consider that two of the loudest voices screeching are those of former energy ministers, Ed Milliband and Ed Davey. Former energy ministers? Surely they’d know what they are talking about?


Oil in troubled waters

20 April 2022

Trading Exchanges don’t always get things right. We’ve written on here for the past four or five weeks a succession of articles which have nor been particularly complimentary about the LME’s recent handling of the nickel market. I’m going to give that one a break for this week and look at the apparent re-emergence - in the US courts, where else - of a previous story of an Exchange.


LME: Worth a reboot after nickel goes to the edge?

13 April 2022

After the events of early-March, when the LME nickel market came close to being untradeable and price-unrepresentative, recent days have seen some sort of normality return to both business and prices, although the exchange is not out of the woods yet – cue a trio of wide-ranging external reviews.


A long time coming, LME?

06 April 2022

The LME today (4th April) issued a notice on Nickel trading which included a point that will raise eyebrows in all corners of the metal industry. Point 8 states: “One aspect that the LME has already identified as having contributed to the situation was sizable positions in the OTC market and the LME’s lack of direct visibility of such activity”.


Why did it go wrong?

23 March 2022

The tribulations of the LME nickel market continue to make the general press, so I thought it apposite to make a couple more observations about where this fiasco has left the LME, and perhaps think a little about why it finds itself effectively on the naughty step.


Badly done, LME

16 March 2022

It used to be so simple, so obvious. The London Metal Exchange was a chalk circle, drawn on the floor, around which a bunch of independent traders stood to shout their buy and sell requirements. They codified it, set standards for quality and delivery and so on, and founded the basis of a remarkable market that has lasted and grown since the mid/late nineteenth century.


Not yet a 21st Century Tin Crisis?

09 March 2022

Those of us with long memories will recall when the LME last suspended one of its key metal contracts – the October 1985 halt in tin trading, which rocked the exchange to the extent that its very existence was thrown into doubt, but which subsequently ushered in deep structural changes.