When the average investor thinks about precious metals, he or she is likely most attracted to items like gold and platinum, silver or even copper, but the surge in another metal commodity could help nations like Greece and Turkey stimulate growth in their economies.
The potential for a zinc boom in coming quarters is possible, and this humble metal could become much more valuable, according to a press release from OilPrice.com.
Contending that “zinc will soon come out of the shadows,” analysts said in the press release that they anticipate a big supply deficit coming, as well as growing demand internationally.
Many former zinc mines remain closed due to depressed prices after the world financial crisis, even though stockpiles have been diminished.
The press release cites China and the United States as major zinc customers using this natural commodity to build defense products.
This is going to benefit companies like Eldorado, which operates a silver, lead and zinc mine in Greece.
With that in mind, a big zinc valuation hike could be a good economic sign for a country beset by big debt and struggling with austerity measures at the edge of the European Union. Much has been made of the Greek economic crisis in recent years, and it remains to be seen how the company can handle its finances.
Is the zinc boom real, and could it help?
A 2009 “Metals Yearbook” report shows Greek production at the nadir of zinc exports; now, many are bullish on the prospect of greater production.
"Zinc has been in headlines recently as it has been in a … bull run since 2016, with prices increasing over 66 percent to date,” Rachael Alva, an analyst for Aranca, told Balkan Business Wire. “The increase in price is a reflection of the increasing demand for the metal and stagnation in supply.”
Alva has over one year of experience covering natural resources stocks based in African markets.
Alva cited “diminishing LME zinc inventories” which, in May at 344,725 tons, were at the lowest level since 2009.
“The decline has been a constant trend since 2012,” Alva said.
Much of the demand for zinc, will be tied to steel, Alva said.
“The increasing demand for Zinc driven by the steel industry, its primary customer,” Alva said. “Steel demand is on an upward trajectory due to the humungous infrastructure investment and rapidly growing construction activities in China, India and the U.S. The demand will strengthen further in the coming years as China, through One Belt One Road, and India have reiterated their intention to continue the infrastructure spending spree.”
The U.S., Alva said, will be another big customer.
“The Trump administration too, realizing that the U.S. infrastructure is crumbling, has announced an increase in infrastructure spending,” Alva said. “The strong global economic recovery has further aided in expanding steel demand, and by extension, (demand for) zinc.”