The metal most known for its use in car exhausts is on a tear as the year comes to a close.
Yesterday palladium hit the highest level since February 2001 at $1,069.50 an ounce – and was up 1.05% at $1,062.50 compared to the previous trading session.
Palladium, used in catalytic converters, was the best performer of the precious metals complex, up over 50% this year due to a supply deficit and expectations of rising demand from automobile manufacturers.
Platinum and palladium have gone in opposite directions with the latter stretching the gap with its sister metal to the widest in 16 years. This helps to explain why platinum is the pick among forecasters for an improvement next year, while palladium is likely to retreat from today’s lofty levels, MINING.com said in a year-end metals summary.
While both platinum and palladium are used in catalytic converters, demand for palladium is higher in the US and the Caribbean as consumers replace vehicles damaged in storms according to George Gero, managing director of RBC Wealth Management in New York, quoted in a Dec. 8 Reuters story.
The fortunes of both metals are tied to vehicle sales. US auto sales rose 1.3% in November compared to the previous year while world number 1 automaker China saw car sales rising 2% in October compared to October 2016, Reuters reported.