Woe are the Commodities

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Woe are the Commodities

I’ve belabored the plight of the downtrodden oil market enough to communicate the point that the foundry world, especially as it pertains steel castings and ductile iron castings (and to some extent gray iron), is suffering under the weight of low oil prices.

However, the entire commodity picture is a bleak one.  In light of the contracting manufacturing market in China, the commodity picture is still bleak.  China has the kingpin of commodity consumption in the world, and as their manufacturing sector dips, the ripple effect touches all commodities.  Paper, plastic, metals…you name it, they are down.  It’s good news for people buying those raw materials, but rarely if ever is a buyer not also a seller who depends upon stability in the underlying markets.

Now, China has embarked on a round of stimulus which should create a burst to commodity imports, so there are plenty of economists who are hopeful that we’ve found a bottom.  Until China truly rebounds though, commodities will continue to hover near the bottom of the barrel.

About the Author:

I am the president of a mid-size iron and steel castings company in Northeast Ohio. The foundry business is dirty, smoky, competitive, and not for the faint of heart. One must endure blistering heat, and go without seeing light for days, if not weeks or months at a time… Okay, that's a slight exaggeration. As a descendant of famed Siberian pathfinder Dmitri Zlatzutuov, I'm eager to carry on the family tradition of persevering no matter what obstacles lie ahead. Now that I'm done giving you the family history, I can tell you that I'm also an attorney and I volunteer a portion of my time to causes involving First Amendment litigation, as well as for Community Legal Services out of Akron, Ohio—for which I was recently recognized as ‘Volunteer Attorney of the Year.’ In addition to my normal day-to-day, I occasionally have works published in journals and magazines, though much less often lately, as running a company tends to fully occupy one's time.

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