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|Market Tendency On Imports Of Ferro-Alloys At 15th May 2009|
|= Risen Prices Of Nickel, Chrome And Moly As Raw Materials Are Still Unable To Influence On Stainless Steel|
The market tendency by item on imports of ferro-alloys into Japan at the 15th May of 2009 is as follows ; |
<> General view = Nickel, chrome and molybdenum are main raw materials for production of stainless steel and the international prices of these three metals are rising at present. Namely, in comparison with the bottomed ones, the current prices have risen by 30% in nickel, by 10% in chrome and by 25% in molybdenum respectively. However, these substantial rises of prices for three metals have nearly nothing to put an impact on production and consumption of stainless steel at present because of the particular situation in China, which has caused to rise prices of raw materials for production of stainless steel. While the world production of crude stainless steel in 2009 is estimated to be 20 - 21 million tons by a considerable decline, China is going to revive the production as the first case and this movement has influenced on prices of these three metals. Nevertheless, according to an analysis, the cases, which have purchased these metals at lower prices to import from overseas sources into China and raw materials produced in China but offered at high prices have been rather disliked to purchase, are overwhelmingly many. Therefore, the sources to purchase these three metals have been replaced in China and the high cost to use Chinese raw materials has been diluted by means of switching the sources. Accordingly, an extent to rise prices of raw materials has been restricted and covered by a cap called as Chinese cost.
<> Ferro-silicon = Price of ferro-silicon to import into Japan has remained unchanged and calmed down. The current price of standard ferro-silicon is US$1,100 per metric ton CIF Japan, which is continuing for 2 - 3 months without a substantial change. In view of the excessive stocks of ferro-silicon in Japan, it is hard to stimulate price of Chinese ferro-silicon by the demand for export and a surge of price for ferro-slicon in domestic market of China is now being watched carefully. Major producers of ferro-silicon in China are proceeding a plan to establish Ferroalloys Exchange Center for trading in futures at Tianjin city with the idea to aim at keeping a transparency and a leadership for the market prices and are scheduled to inaugurate its concrete operations in July - August of this year. Therefore, it is interested in seeing how extent does the operation at this Ferroalloys Exchange Center influence on prices of ferro-alloys.
<> Silico-manganese = A differential of prices between Chinese product and Indian product has narrowed. Accordingly, the negotiations on imports of Indian silico-manganese for shipments to Japan in the first half of 2009 put a considerable influence on the market price of this ferro-alloy. The period to close settlement of accounts by the 31st March of 2009 was over and, consequently, the aggressive sales of Indian silico-manganese at discounted prices have disappeared from the market, having caused to rise gradually market price of silico-manganese to a level of US$1,000 per metric ton CIF Japan. On the contrary, price of Chinese silico-manganese for export has fallen and a differential of prices between Chinese product and Indian product has shrunken to a range of US$100 - 150 per ton, For a reference, Japan imported 20,000 tons of Chinese silico-manganese and 5,800 tons of Indian product in January - March quarter of 2009. Indian producers have launched from 2008 to expand the facilities for manganese ferro-alloys and, therefore, it is necessary for them to develop the markets to export manganese ferro-alloys from India.
<> Charge chrome = Some of idled electric furnaces in South Africa are moving in April to May to resume its operations but a general tendency has continued to maintain a basic tone to reduce production of ferro-chrome by 50 - 70%. The production activities of stainless steel in Europe have been still depressed. ThyssenKrupp of Germany announced on the end of last week that a number of the orders for stainless steel products received for 6 months of October 2008 to March 2009 had a decrease of 46%. A necessity to reorganize the stainless steel industry in Europe has arisen as an opinion and a defect of the economic structure to rely more on exports has come up to the surface in stainless steel market. The stockiests, who have been damaged seriously by a loss experienced in the last 6 months, have been still not encouraged even by a 30% rise of nickel price. The price of high carbon ferro-chrome (including charge chrome) to be sold mainly to China is now being offered by shippers at 65 US-Cents per lb. of Cr with a certain rise but, at this stage, buyer's side has taken an attitude to watch carefully about further movements of the price. The current price of high carbon ferro-chrome (with Cr 60% min.), being distributed in domestic market of China, is on a level of 68 - 70 US-Cents per lb. of Cr and this price level has become the wall to rise further price of high carbon ferro-chrome.
<> Manganese metal = Nickel is a rival metal for manganese metal but a rise of nickel price is a favorable factor for that of manganese metal. The production of stainless steel in the whole country of China has turned to recover as the first case in the world and, accordingly, the production of 200 series stainless steel in China is expected to increase. On the other hand, Chinese producers of electrolytic manganese metal have been driven to face a severity in their production activities in order to comply with the regulations for environmental pollution and to check high cost and, consequently, their stocks of electrolytic manganese metal have become thin. The price of electrolytic manganese metal to be sold to domestic market of China is now being offered at CNY12,800 - 13,000 per metric ton ex. plant. The sales of Chinese electrolytic manganese metal in Europe have continued to be depressed for a long period but the excessive quantity of this metal stocked by traders at warehouses in Rotterdam is in the direction to be digested and the current price of Chinese electrolytic manganese metal is on a level of US$2,450 - 2,500 per metric ton ex. warehouse in Rotterdam with unpaid import duty. The inquiries for electrolytic manganese metal have been placed before Chinese suppliers from South Korea and India, and some contracts are supposed to have been concluded at US$2,400 - 2,450 per metric ton FOB China. A Japanese trading company informed that Chinese side is now offering electrolytic manganese metal at US$2,350 - 2,400 per metric ton CIF Japan and these prices will be a severe level for them.
<> Molybdenum = It was informed that molybdenum oxide has been recently contracted at US$10 per lb. of Mo, having rebounded from the bottom of US$7.75 prevailed in the middle of April, and some of the parties concerned have emphasized a further rise of price for molybdenum oxide. However, from a general point of view, price of molybdenum oxide is anticipated to come to a standstill by a level of US$9.60 per lb. of Mo and a rise of price for molybdenum oxide will be in a small extent without reaching a level of US$10. Being stimulated by the extraordinary purchases of molybdenum by China, molybdenum prices have bottomed out and turned to rise but an effect of this aspect, which is expected to improve the world supply of molybdenum, has been understood to be restrictive. A number of the orders for stainless steel products received by European mills is still unable to foresee a signal to turn to a favorable tone and the price range of US$10 per lb. of Mo for molybdenum oxide is thought as a dangerous water level. Ferro-molybdenum is now being offered at US$22.80 - 23.50 per kg. of Mo CIF Japan, having had a small rise.
<> Ferro-vanadium = Although molybdenum prices have rebounded, price of ferro-vanadium is still continuing to fall further and the current price of ferro-vanadium has had a slight fall from that at the end of April. Traders are now offering ferro-vanadium at US$18.00 - 19.20 per kg. of V CIF Japan, having shown a further fall.
|last modified : Thu 21 May, 2009 [11:36]|