rare earth minerals

Commodities Surge as China Slashes Rare Earth Exports

China's plans to cut its exports of rare earth minerals by 35% in 2011 sent commodities stocks soaring, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closing up 1.5%, China's Shanghai Composite Index adding 0.7%, and Japan's Nikkei 225 Index advancing 0.5%.

China Vows to Maintain Rare Mineral Supply

China vowed it would maintain the supply of rare minerals and said it may boost 2011 exports of the substances. The Chinese Commerce Ministry denied reports that it would further reduce export quotas.

Asian Markets Soar as Japan Springs into Action

Japan's ruling Democratic Party proposed yet another economic stimulus package, this one for more than $58 billion, sending the Nikkei climbing 1.8%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 1.1%, while markets in China remained closed.

Afghanistan Harbors $1 Trillion in Minerals

The New York Times reports that "The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself."