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Brent futures trade below $80pb

Brent futures plunged by 3.19% to $78.59pb today from $82.51pb in the previous trading day. This was triggered by a larger than expected rise in U.S. crude inventories by 3.6 million barrels to 421.9 million barrels and mounting worries about demand in Asia as China’s industrial fuel demand declined. However, in the near term, lower inflation data from major economies [U.S. (3.20%), Euro Area (2.90%), Germany (3.80%), U.K. (4.6%), and France (4.00%)] will discourage further rate hikes and cause oil prices to rise.

Global price of lumber set to soar further

Year-to-date, the global price of lumber spiked by 7.34% to $529.92 per 1000 board feet on November 16, owing to lower production in North America and expectations of higher housing demand in the US. According to the United Nations (UN), Nigeria, which is Africa’s largest timber producer, has the highest deforestation rate in the world, with an estimated 3.7% of its forest lost every year. Kenya, however, declared a surprise public holiday on November 13 to plant 100 million seedlings in a bid to increase forest cover in the country to 10% from 7% and achieve the UN’s plan of curbing deforestation by 2030. In spite of this initiative, global deforestation still continues at a rate of approximately 10 million hectares per year keeping the price of lumber elevated.

These and other burning economic issues were discussed on the Business Morning programme on Channels TV by FDC’s research associate, Olasubomi Alli-Balogun.

Click the link  to watch the video.

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