Archive for April, 2009

h1

Interesting Article on the China’s Copper Strategy

April 22, 2009

My friend Matt sent me this article yesterday, which I thought I would share with everyone.

Seemingly a dry look at what China is doing regarding copper, it contains one or two interesting bits of information and style.

I have seen the question of whether or not China looking to use the current economic situation to further its interests quite a lot lately.

I often find it interesting with western journalists that they see such a move from the US as ‘prudent financial policy’ (although i suspect when it comes to the US that term is oxymoronic) but when China does it they are ‘trying to take over the world.’

The stand out part of this article is that it does not take such a tone.

So China’s longer-term view is that now is the time to secure a substantial foothold in copper to ensure the country will not be exploited in the same way it was with oil, iron ore and other materials in the last boom. ”

As someone who was on the western side of negotiations on iron ore deals 6 years ago I witnessed first hand just what that exploitation was.

At the top end of the scale were the major mills who had to purchase in a sellers market. It wasn’t so bad for them but they were definitely the weaker party during talks.

At the bottom end were thousands of massively uninformed small Chinese buyers scrabbling around for any bit of iron ore they could lay their hands on ripe for exploitation by anyone claiming to have ore. Right in the middle of this unholy mess were the mines in India and Brazil just putting up prices until it all collapsed.

No wonder the Chinese have decided to change their strategy- I would say that is a very smart move.

Advertisements
h1

What is going on in China’s luxury goods sector?

April 13, 2009

I have heard from a good friend who is also in the luxury goods sector in China that even companies like Ermenegildo Zegna are having trouble paying their bills?

Is this just a case of pushing the smaller companies to keep reserves up or are they being squeezed hard by head office?

Personally I find it hard to believe that the luxury goods sector should be anything but booming in China. Given the enormous resources of the wealthy in China, anyone with money to put down 5k on a handbag probably hasn’t been greatly affected by the credit crunch.

I realise that the casual visitor to China will see a plethora of LV nags in the hands of the myriad golden sparrows on the streets of Shanghai, but most of the bags are fake.

Perhaps the companies are cannibalising profits from China to feed into other areas. Certainly, in this climate I don’t much feel like buying myself a new watch. Although just as like, that is fatherhood speaking too.

Watch this space, I will be interested to hear of any reports on how the market is actually doing.