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Author: Bruno de Vuyst    Follow @b_devuyst on Twitter

While spot prices suffered from the Fed Minutes released yesterday and sank, looking more closely at LME quotes for later delivery may be of interest. The volumes are picking up, albeit slowly. Moreover, there appear to be increasing delta’s between offer and bid as one progresses in time of delivery. This may be interpreted as writing on the wall for a further bear market in 2017, which would be in line with general macroeconomic forecasts of a weakly recovering global economy, with lags in trade

But this might also be interpreted as pointing to results in restructuring by miners and smelters, and the very beginnings of a new, realistic, price setting, which would be less bearish.

Key is now to follow closely progress reports in the sector, so as to see which of the players are first in succeeding in their restructurations. Such progress may not reflect immediately in earnings and may be buried inside a report, but they may be the key indicators of success to come.

Is there hope outside of that town in Arkansas? Rather than investing in a marketing organization and hoping for its further inventiveness in producing gadgets we all want to have, it may be profitable to ride out the bear market and to be ready to pick up on profitably restructured market participants at increasingly interesting p/e ratios.

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