Industrial Platinum Group Metals (PGM) rhodium, palladium, ruthenium, and iridium, have seen arrested growth since mid-april of this year. Rhenium has been flat at US$3000/lb since July of 2009 and osmium pricing has been flat for many years. This is based on the market pricing of these metals on the EIB.
The price flat-lining of the first group of PGMs is suggestive of a large scale hesitancy in growth of the basic materials manufacturing segment. These metals are reflective of demand for output in core industrial technology such as catalysts and high performance components.
Most telling is the price decline in rhodium. The price of this automotive emission control component is strongly connected to the automotive sector. Rhodium prices have fallen from a mid-April 2010 high of US$2975 /toz to the current price of US$2425/toz reflecting aggregate demand.
Platinum prices have been flat as well, with a minor downtick to the most recent plateau in mid-May. This is against the backdrop of slow but persistant growth in gold and silver. Platinum enjoys demand from jewelry segment as well as bullion and industrial demand.