Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. US Housing Market Real Estate Crash The Next Shoe To Drop – Part II - Chris_Vermeulen
2.The Coronavirus Greatest Economic Depression in History? - Nadeem_Walayat
3.US Real Estate Housing Market Crash Is The Next Shoe To Drop - Chris_Vermeulen
4.Coronavirus Stock Market Trend Implications and AI Mega-trend Stocks Buying Levels - Nadeem_Walayat
5. Are Coronavirus Death Statistics Exaggerated? Worse than Seasonal Flu or Not?- Nadeem_Walayat
6.Coronavirus Stock Market Trend Implications, Global Recession and AI Stocks Buying Levels - Nadeem_Walayat
7.US Fourth Turning Accelerating Towards Debt Climax - James_Quinn
8.Dow Stock Market Trend Analysis and Forecast - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Britain's FAKE Coronavirus Death Statistics Exposed - Nadeem_Walayat
10.Commodity Markets Crash Catastrophe Charts - Rambus_Chartology
Last 7 days
A Simple Way to Preserve Your Wealth Amid Uncertainty - 11th Aug 20
Precious Metals Complex Impulse Move : Where Is next Resistance? - 11th Aug 20
Gold Miners Junior Stcks Buying Spree - 11th Aug 20
Has the Fed Let the Inflation Genie Out of the Bottle? - 10th Aug 20
The Strange Food Trend That’s Making Investors Rich - 10th Aug 20
Supply & Demand For Money – The End of Inflation? - 10th Aug 20
Revisiting Our Silver and Gold Predictions – Get Ready For Higher Prices - 10th Aug 20
Storm Clouds Are Gathering for a Major Stock and Commodity Markets Downturn - 10th Aug 20
A 90-Year-Old Stock Market Investment Insight That's Relevant in 2020 - 10th Aug 20
Debt and Dollar Collapse Leading to Potential Stock Market Melt-Up, - 10th Aug 20
Coronavirus: UK Parents Demand ALL Schools OPEN September, 7 Million Children Abandoned by Teachers - 9th Aug 20
Computer GPU Fans Not Spinning Quick FIX - Sticky Fans Solution - 9th Aug 20
Find the Best Speech Converter for You - 9th Aug 20
Silver Bull Market Update - 7th Aug 20
This Inflation-Adjusted Silver Chart Tells An Interesting Story - 7th Aug 20
The Great American Housing Boom Has Begun - 7th Aug 20
NATURAL GAS BEGINS UPSIDE BREAKOUT MOVE - 7th Aug 20
Know About Lotteries With The Best Odds Of Winning - 7th Aug 20
Could Gold Price Reach $7,000 by 2030? - 6th Aug 20
Bananas for All! Keep Dancing… FOMC - 6th Aug 20
How to Do Bets During This Time - 6th Aug 20
How to develop your stock trading strategy - 6th Aug 20
Stock Investors What to do if Trump Bans TikTok - 5th Aug 20
Gold Trifecta of Key Signals for Gold Mining Stocks - 5th Aug 20
ARE YOU LOVING YOUR SERVITUDE? - 5th Aug 20
Stock Market Uptrend Continues? - 4th Aug 20
The Dimensions of Covid-19: The Hong Kong Flu Redux - 4th Aug 20
High Yield Junk Bonds Are Hot Again -- Despite Warning Signs - 4th Aug 20
Gold Stocks Autumn Rally - 4th Aug 20
“Government Sachs” Is Worried About the Federal Reserve Note - 4th Aug 20
Gold Miners Still Pushing That Cart of Rocks Up Hill - 4th Aug 20
UK Government to Cancel Christmas - Crazy Covid Eid 2020! - 4th Aug 20
Covid-19 Exposes NHS Institutional Racism Against Black and Asian Staff and Patients - 4th Aug 20
How Sony Is Fueling the Computer Vision Boom - 3rd Aug 20
Computer Gaming System Rig Top Tips For 6 Years Future Proofing Build Spec - 3rd Aug 20
Cornwwall Bude Caravan Park Holidays 2020 - Look Inside Holiday Resort Caravan - 3rd Aug 20
UK Caravan Park Holidays 2020 Review - Hoseasons Cayton Bay North East England - 3rd Aug 20
Best Travel Bags for 2020 Summer Holidays , Back Sling packs, water proof, money belt and tactical - 3rd Aug 20
Precious Metals Warn Of Increased Volatility Ahead - 2nd Aug 20
The Key USDX Sign for Gold and Silver - 2nd Aug 20
Corona Crisis Will Have Lasting Impact on Gold Market - 2nd Aug 20
Gold & Silver: Two Pictures - 1st Aug 20
The Bullish Case for Stocks Isn't Over Yet - 1st Aug 20
Is Gold Price Action Warning Of Imminent Monetary Collapse - Part 2? - 1st Aug 20
Will America Accept the World's Worst Pandemic Response Government - 1st Aug 20
Stock Market Technical Patterns, Future Expectations and More – Part II - 1st Aug 20
Trump White House Accelerating Toward a US Dollar Crisis - 31st Jul 20
Why US Commercial Real Estate is Set to Get Slammed - 31st Jul 20
Gold Price Blows Through Upside Resistance - The Chase Is On - 31st Jul 20
Is Crude Oil Price Setting Up for a Waterfall Decline? - 31st Jul 20
Stock Market Technical Patterns, Future Expectations and More - 30th Jul 20
Why Big Money Is Already Pouring Into Edge Computing Tech Stocks - 30th Jul 20
Economic and Geopolitical Worries Fuel Gold’s Rally - 30th Jul 20
How to Finance an Investment Property - 30th Jul 20
I Hate Banks - Including Goldman Sachs - 29th Jul 20
NASDAQ Stock Market Double Top & Price Channels Suggest Pending Price Correction - 29th Jul 20
Silver Price Surge Leaves Naysayers in the Dust - 29th Jul 20
UK Supermarket Covid-19 Shop - Few Masks, Lack of Social Distancing (Tesco) - 29th Jul 20
Budgie Clipped Wings, How Long Before it Can Fly Again? - 29th Jul 20
How To Take Advantage Of Tesla's 400% Stock Surge - 29th Jul 20
Gold Makes Record High and Targets $6,000 in New Bull Cycle - 28th Jul 20
Gold Strong Signal For A Secular Bull Market - 28th Jul 20
Anatomy of a Gold and Silver Precious Metals Bull Market - 28th Jul 20
Shopify Is Seizing an $80 Billion Pot of Gold - 28th Jul 20
Stock Market Minor Correction Underway - 28th Jul 20
Why College Is Never Coming Back - 27th Jul 20
Stocks Disconnect from Economy, Gold Responds - 27th Jul 20
Silver Begins Big Upside Rally Attempt - 27th Jul 20
The Gold and Silver Markets Have Changed… What About You? - 27th Jul 20
Google, Apple And Amazon Are Leading A $30 Trillion Assault On Wall Street - 27th Jul 20
This Stock Market Indicator Reaches "Lowest Level in Nearly 20 Years" - 26th Jul 20
New Wave of Economic Stimulus Lifts Gold Price - 26th Jul 20
Stock Market Slow Grind Higher Above the Early June Stock Highs - 26th Jul 20
How High Will Silver Go? - 25th Jul 20
If You Own Gold, Look Out Below - 25th Jul 20
Crude Oil and Energy Sets Up Near Major Resistance – Breakdown Pending - 25th Jul 20
FREE Access to Premium Market Forecasts by Elliott Wave International - 25th Jul 20
The Promise of Silver as August Approaches: Accumulation and Conversation - 25th Jul 20
The Silver Bull Gateway is at Hand - 24th Jul 20
The Prospects of S&P 500 Above the Early June Highs - 24th Jul 20
How Silver Could Surpass Its All-Time High - 24th Jul 20

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

How to Get Rich Investing in Stocks by Riding the Electron Wave

Obama: U.S. Energy Future Depends on Rare Earth Metals

Politics / Metals & Mining Mar 19, 2012 - 05:33 AM GMT

By: Money_Morning

Politics

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleDon Miller writes: Will a near-monopoly in rare earth metals do for China what oil did for Saudi Arabia?

Not if the U.S. government has anything to say about it.

President Barack Obama made that clear last week when he joined the European Union and the Japanese government in filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) about China's manipulation of the global market in rare earth metals.


"We've got to take control of our energy future and we cannot let that energy industry take root in some other country because they were allowed to break the rules," Obama said in a press conference.

It's a clear signal that Obama will do anything to keep China from maintaining a stranglehold on rare earth metals-a set of 17 minerals that are responsible for powering everything from hybrid cars to self-cleaning ovens.

More importantly, the filing is an acknowledgement that the minerals represent a crucial source of renewable energy that are now essential to the way we live.

Rare Earth Metals: Easy to Find, Hard to Mine
Rare earths have been in the headlines a lot recently.

That's because demand for rare earth metals has skyrocketed in the past few years and is likely to grow exponentially in the years ahead.

The pace of technological innovation is accelerating and the world is producing and consuming more high-tech devices than ever before.

After the rare metal Europium was introduced as a source of the color red in TV sets in 1967, their use has expanded to MRI and x-ray machines, DVDs, mobile phones, lasers and many other devices that we use daily.

More recently lanthanum has become a key component of hybrid car batteries, making it critical to Obama's campaign to double the fuel efficiency of the American automobile by 2025.

Crucial as they are, the elements are hardly rare. They are found scattered around the globe in the earth's crust and are as commonplace as copper and lead.

The problem is, they are usually found in small quantities, making them difficult to cost-effectively mine. They also come with severe environmental hazards because they are often found along with radioactive materials or other harmful substances.

China's Near- Monopoly on Rare Earth Metals
As it turns out, China has vast rare-earth deposits, mostly in Inner Mongolia. The government has also heavily subsidized state-owned mining companies and allowed them to operate without strict environmental oversight.

That's made China the biggest producer of rare earths, with a more than 95% share of the global market.

Over the past decade, demand has tripled to 125,000 metric tons a year and could exceed 200,000 tons by 2014, the BBC reported.

Prices for rare earth metals soared in 2010 after China slapped a temporary ban on exports in the middle of a trade dispute with the U.S. and Japan. China later dropped the ban in favor of cutting exports to 93,800 tons per year.

But China isn't just choking off supplies. It's also stoking its domestic mining industry with favorable pricing as a ploy to get Western manufacturers to move factories inside China, according to a study by Bloomberg Government.

The average Chinese export price of neodymium oxide - a key component in computers - was $321 per kilogram in the summer of 2011, 66% higher than the domestic price and a 563% increase compared with the same period in 2010, the study said.

The inflated prices have put Western manufacturers on the hunt for alternatives.

"You are seeing a lot of investment by high-tech firms on research to become less reliant on these materials," Matt Robinson of Moody's Analytics told the BBC.

Miners Expand
Beijing has denied the allegations in the WTO case, saying that it enforces quotas to ensure there's no environmental damage from excessive mining.

The WTO's rules require China to hold talks with the U.S., the EU and Japan within two months. But the WTO cannot impose a solution, setting the stage for a protracted negotiation and perhaps even a trade war.

Meanwhile, mining companies have been watching the developments with an eye towards cashing in.

Australia's Arafura Resources Ltd. (ASX: ARU) is raising $1.05 billion for a rare earth project.

And Colorado-based Molycorp Inc. (NYSE: MCP) has restarted the largest U.S. rare earth mine in California, after it was shuttered in 2002 due to environmental issues.

Commodities expert Peter Krauth says the rare metals dispute is just another example of what's been going on for decades.

"Over the last 160 years, humanity has dug up, refined, processed, and consumed all the easy-to-get minerals. Economically viable supplies of much of the "stuff' we take for granted are being depleted at an exponential rate."

Krauth feels a succession of historic profit opportunities await those who know how to leverage this predicament.

In fact, soon virtually every substance vital to modern life will become enormously expensive and profitable for investors who know how to play it.

As commodities and mining expert Peter Krauth explains in his latest report, "today's scarcity and soaring costs could spur the biggest investment gains in history."

To read Peter's latest free report click here.

Source :http://moneymorning.com/2012/03/19/obama-u-s-energy-future-depends-on-rare-earth-metals/

Money Morning/The Money Map Report

©2012 Monument Street Publishing. All Rights Reserved. Protected by copyright laws of the United States and international treaties. Any reproduction, copying, or redistribution (electronic or otherwise, including on the world wide web), of content from this website, in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of Monument Street Publishing. 105 West Monument Street, Baltimore MD 21201, Email: customerservice@moneymorning.com

Disclaimer: Nothing published by Money Morning should be considered personalized investment advice. Although our employees may answer your general customer service questions, they are not licensed under securities laws to address your particular investment situation. No communication by our employees to you should be deemed as personalized investent advice. We expressly forbid our writers from having a financial interest in any security recommended to our readers. All of our employees and agents must wait 24 hours after on-line publication, or after the mailing of printed-only publication prior to following an initial recommendation. Any investments recommended by Money Morning should be made only after consulting with your investment advisor and only after reviewing the prospectus or financial statements of the company.

Money Morning Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules