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Tim MaverickTim Maverick

, Senior Correspondent


Shipping Industry Sinks Under Excess Supply

The partnership of small, family-ran shipowners and cash-laden, private equity players mirrors the classic tale of Prince Charming and Cinderella. The Wall Street financial firms embraced lowly shipping companies, thinking they could catch the rebound in an industry with some of the largest boom-and-bust cycles. But the marriage between these two vastly different worlds has...

Iron Ore Producers’ Descent Into Madness

The spot price of iron ore continues its journey into the abyss, hitting below $47 per metric ton on April 2. That’s the lowest level since the inception of spot pricing in November 2008. Iron ore is already down more than 25% this year, following a plunge of 47% in 2014. The reasons behind the...

Iran Oil Surprise Blindsides Market

The world is seemingly awash in oil. We have U.S. production continuing to climb despite oil companies’ cutbacks. Output is nearly 9.5 million barrels per day (bpd), the most in 30 years. The Energy Information Administration says that 2014’s production rise by 1.2 million bpd was the biggest annual increase since recordkeeping began in 1900!...

Russia Proposes Superhighway to Alaska

Putin’s Russia is, if nothing else, ambitious. At a recent meeting of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the head of Russian Railways, Vladimir Yakunin, put forth a bold plan for a massive trans-Siberian highway. This superhighway project, called the Trans-Eurasian Belt Development, includes a major roadway to be built alongside the existing Trans-Siberian Railway. And...

Debunking 60 Minutes’ Rare Earths Report

On March 22, 60 Minutes ran a segment on the rare earth industry, covering how important rare earth metals are in our modern, technology-based world. Tiny and very powerful magnets made from rare earths are crucial to our consumer gadgets, renewable energy production, and the defense industry. The report was nice to see. But I...

Fracklog Threatens to Put a Lid on Oil Prices

The price of oil continues hovering near six-year lows. Oil companies waiting for prices to rebound have turned to various storage methods for keeping oil “on ice” unless prices recover. These methods included tactics such as storing oil in vast storage tanks onshore and in huge oil tankers offshore. But, clever companies have found another...

Investors’ Foolish Rush Into Oil ETFs

Oil investors should open their eyes to the valuable lesson those in the natural gas industry learned the hard way… There is no direct correlation between the number of drilling rigs and the amount of oil produced. In the Marcellus Shale, the number of rigs peaked in 2012 at 144. That number dropped to 98...

Coal Tycoon Making Last Stand for U.S. Industry

A cloud of coal dust continues to hang over the U.S. coal industry. Lately, the industry has been dealing with some bad publicity from the coal ash spill into North Carolina’s Dan River last year. Coal ash is what you get after coal is burned by utilities for power. This remaining ash can contain a...

Aftermath of the Derailed Keystone Pipeline

As expected, the Keystone XL Pipeline legislation was vetoed by President Obama, and the vote to override the veto failed in the Senate. Where does that leave us now that the politicos have moved on to fight about something else? A pretty interesting place for our nation’s energy infrastructure. Railway companies are growing hesitant to...

Platinum Still Trying to Dig Out

In the past year or so, the “precious” seems to have drained out of precious metals. Prices have drifted downward, and every rally has been met by more selling. Platinum is no exception. Prices haven’t rallied, even though South African platinum miners held a strike for five months last year. South Africa holds about 80%...