Many people nowadays are familiar with the different types of commodities that we can invest in. Accepted options include energy commodities, such as oil and natural gas, or the agricultural or “soft” commodities like corn, wheat and cotton. Metals are also popular investments, and many people use gold as a type of currency in times of economic uncertainty. Silver, copper and platinum have also gained popularity as investment options for those searching for ways to diversify their assets.
An important group of metals called Technology Metals are also a hot topic for discussions among wealthy investors worldwide. Technology Metals are indispensable to global innovation and the development of new generation technologies. With global demand soaring and capacity limited by access to supply of the raw materials, investments in technology metals are expected to yield returns of 14 to 19% per annum,” according to the website of Electio Middle East, the largest commodity brokerage in the region.
Electio offers investors a way to buy the physical metals; the company offers something that appeal to those who either require a Shari’ah compliant product or simply want to hold something tangible.
Technology metals are a group of periodic elements made up of the 15 lanthanides along with yttrium and scandium. Tech Metals deposits exist all over the world; and they are not so rare in the Earth’s crust. But the problem is finding them and being able to extract and refine them at an economical price point.
There are numerous mines and projects around the world, but notable deposits can be found in parts of Canada, Australia, Russia and China among other locations. While rare earth deposits may be plentiful, the costs associated with mining and refining the minerals is a major factor for their higher prices.
Prices for technology metals, which are defined as rare earth elements, minor metals (such as gallium) and strategic metals (such as molybdenum and titanium), have been rising in the face of a major supply/demand imbalance. Demand for these materials is increasing at a rapid rate, as the earth’s population continues to grow and become more high-tech.
According to market analysts, the market value for tech metals will reach around 250,000 tons by the 2015, as demand requirements are increasing in a high pace worldwide. For instance; the usage of Molybdenum will double by 2020, and current supply levels are very much insufficient to meet the growing demands.