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On this Memorial Day 2017, we at MetalMiner would like to take the opportunity to look back at what matters, starting with the reason for the holiday itself.

We salute the brave men and women across all armed forces for their service and sacrifice, which is more important today than ever. In the wake of the Manchester bombing, it’s only right to take a moment and honor those who risk all to fight for freedom from fear.

14ktgold/Adobe Stock

Memorial Day Roundup – The Year That’s Been So Far

What else matters on this Memorial Day?

The first five months of 2017 have been interesting ones, in which we’ve seen these three MetalMiner stories perform the best — spoiler alert, aluminum is the frontrunner for Metal of the Year so far:

We Launched MetalMiner Benchmark

Here’s the deal, folks.

Gamechanger, amirite?

ISM 2017 Happened

A contingent of our company, representing our sister site Spend Matters, descended upon the annual Institute for Supply Management (ISM) conference in Orlando, Fla., the premier event for purchasing/procurement and supply chain professionals.

Here’s a highlight, from our colleague-in-attendance Pierre Mitchell:

A “great session was the Q&A with ISM CEO Tom Derry, Hans Melotte (ex-Johnson & Johnson CPO who is now CPO at Starbucks) and Kris Pinnow (CPO at B/E Aerospace). I asked Tom about the ISM economic forecast showing slightly higher U.S. growth rates in manufacturing compared to non-manufacturing, and he said that it’s likely a combination of nearshoring, automation, foreign investment in the U.S. and manufacturing for exports. Here, Tom aptly said that ‘a company’s supply chain follows demand – and that’s [U.S. government] administration agnostic.'”

For more on the conference highlights, head over to Spend Matters.

We Bid Adieu to Jeffrey Yoders

jeff yoders chicago cubs 1060 project

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“Where next for oil prices?” Stuart Burns had asked on Monday. In the short term, that would be downwards.

Benchmark Your Current Metal Price by Grade, Shape and Alloy: See How it Stacks Up

Yesterday the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) met in Vienna and decided to extend supply cuts for another nine months, until March 2018. That is what was expected, but oil prices responded by dropping quite a bit, Reuters reported, by roughly 5%.

The price of oil has indications beyond, well, oil. “Oil prices are a proxy for energy prices, and a rising oil price can be supportive for energy intensive metals like aluminum,” Burns wrote. “A rising oil price is also taken as a proxy for rising industrial demand – a bullish indicator that global growth is strong. A falling price, on the other hand, should be good for consumer spending as it keeps more money in drivers’ pockets and lowers the cost of goods sold for companies far and wide.”

Where Next for the U.S. Dollar?

Another driver of metal prices is the dollar. This past week, Raul de Frutos looked at the movement of the U.S. dollar, which recently hit a seven-month low. What is the reason for this drop?

“First, the dollar had steadily risen for three consecutive months,” de Frutos wrote. “It’s not uncommon to see profit-taking after such an increase. But there are also some fundamental reasons behind this sell-off.” (more…)