SWITZERLAND March 21 2014 3:46 PM
ZURICH (Scrap Register): Russian shipments of palladium to Switzerland were largely stable in February and the trend is likely to remain lower, said Barclays in a research note.
According to Barclays, traders closely monitor Swiss trade data for signs of Russian supplies, as Russia is thought to move much of its palladium through Switzerland. Russian shipments in February were roughly 6,500 ounces.
This was nearly identical to January – which has been the trend for more than a year. Similar to previous months, the base trend of shipments was entirely semi-manufactured, whereas spikes in previous months came in the form of powder.
Ignoring the spikes in 2013, shipments have trended lower as the 6.4-6.6koz median shipment has occurred in more of half of the months since the beginning of 2011, said Barclays.
Barclays expects the overall trend lower in shipments to continue, but with the risk of a spike yet in the first quarter.
Overall, Barclays continues to expect limited releases from Russian state stocks this year and reiterate our expectation for the palladium market to deliver a sizable deficit in 2014.