May 9, 2012


Commodities forecast – food, oil, farmland prices to slump

Commodities Trader Peter Brandt sees lower oil prices; bubble in grains, farmland

Brandt is a technical trader, poring over charts and patterns to spot potential breakouts and breakdowns. Nowadays he’s bearish on corn and other grains, along with farmland, oil and natural gas.

“When you look at those markets, I think we’re at prices that are unsustainable.” said Brandt, who also writes a popular Internet blog about trading commodities and stocks. Read Peter Brandt’s blog.

Gold is one of the few commodities Brandt is staying long on. He also said the U.S. stock market is attractively valued, and warns of a “huge bubble” forming in Treasurys and other fixed-income investments once U.S. interest rates rise.

1. Natural gas is a bust

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Smart Meter backlash

Bloomberg News reports a fast-growing consumer movement in opposition to smart meters.   Smart meters, so called because they allow real-time usage monitoring, originally were pitched by the industry as a boon to consumers for increasing control over consumption.

The gadgets that bring the so-called smart grid into your home are being foisted on consumers for the convenience of the Utility companies. With the new wi-fi meters sending user data back to base, Utilities no longer need to employ meter readers, but still want to charge end-users for the installation, as well as picking up substantial government grants.

Now a growing consumer backlash is slowing U.S. utilities’ network upgrade. Bloomberg puts a figure of $29 billion on the project but the true costs is far higher. One consultancy put the total at $1.5 TRILLION.

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From farm to plate

London, Ontario……For two hours every Thursday afternoon,  Julie Richards-Bramhill  is a conduit connecting a lone vegetable farmer with  hundreds of families looking for organic food.

Her garage is a drop-off and pickup point for  Triple Cord Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), one of several in the London area.  CSAs are a fast-growing solution to an old issue: how to connect food producers with customers. The customers are essentially buying a share of the season’s crops: if there’s a bumper crop of yams, for example, they all eat lots of yams. If the cucumber crop turns sour, none get to take home cukes.

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