Precious Metals

Palladium Surges 12% as UK Sanctions Target Russia Metals

(Bloomberg) — Palladium headed for its biggest gain since March 2020 as the UK government targeted Russian metals — but not palladium — with new sanctions.

The metal that’s mainly used in catalytic converters surged as much as 12% on Thursday after the UK published measures that ban British citizens and entities from buying certain Russian metals. 

While the measures didn’t target palladium supplies from Russia, which account for 40% of new mine supply, broader concerns about disruption were enough to propel the metal to the highest since Nov. 7. Traders with bearish positions covering their bets also fueled its gain.

Palladium is still down 38% this year as demand from automakers faltered thanks to de-stocking and the use of cheaper platinum in its place. Supplies from top miners Russia and South Africa have also not faced the kind of disruption that many investors feared.