The past may be prologue but it's not necessarily a reliable forecasting tool 

Jan 01, 2010 | 07:44 AM |

Question: if you'd cleared space in your garage on Jan. 1, 2009, for a ton of No. 1 heavy melt scrap, a couple of hundred pounds of copper and an ounce of gold, which would have proved the smartest investment a year on?

Leave aside the fact that, in the months following the near-collapse of the financial system, it seemed no-one was buying anything, let alone "commodity" products that were in the midst of the mother of all corrections. Metal prices were still tumbling sharply a year ago, and if you'd offered producers—even many buyers—a price rebound that was half the size of the one that materialized in the spring, they'd likely have bitten your hand off.....

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