Is this the start of another iron ore bull market?

What: Australia investors have awoken this morning to news that the iron ore price surged a staggering 18.5% overnight thanks to an upbeat assessment by the market that a pro-growth stance by Beijing would boost demand for steel.

Iron ore is now fetching around US$64 a tonne, representing a rise of close to 70% from the record low of US$38.30 a tonne reached in December 2015.

Oil markets also continue to enjoy positive momentum. Overnight the price broke through the US$40 a barrel level which means it has now climbed around 50% from the 12-year lows hit in January.

So What: Leading the charge higher on Monday amongst the iron ore majors was Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX: FMG) whose share price rallied 24%. Peers BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) recorded gains of 7.5% and 5.1% respectively.

Oil producers also enjoyed gains on Monday with second-tier producer Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) jumping 13%. Amongst the majors Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) was the best performer, increasing by 7.3%.

Now What: While it can be said that markets have a tendency to take the elevator down but the escalator up, when a market is near a bottom there is often a swift move higher.

It can be frustrating to miss those initial gains, however, if the fundamentals have improved – if Chinese policies can really underpin the steel market and major oil producing countries can agree to reign in supply – then we could be looking at the beginnings of a new bull market…

And a new bull market in iron ore and oil – after what has been a harrowing bear market – would imply there are further share price gains ahead.

Could the commodity market crash set the scene for the next bull market?

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Motley Fool contributor Tim McArthur has no position in any stocks mentioned. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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