• Ore and alloy prices rise in China
• Mills’ tender prices boost contact price
• European market claws back some recent losses
• Japan and South Korea prices hold for third consecutive
• US gradual price decline continues
Chinese prices rise
Metal Bulletin’s price quotation
for domestic Chinese ferro-chrome on contracts
6,700-7,000 yuan ($984-1,028) per tonne on Friday, compared
with 5,300-6,300 yuan per tonne previously.
Metal Bulletin assessed spot domestic Chinese ferro-chrome prices
at 7,000-7,500 yuan per tonne, up 100 yuan per tonne at the
high end of its trading range.
Earlier in the week, Baosteel settled its high-carbon ferro-chrome
tender price for July
at 7,000 yuan per tonne, up 1,500
yuan from its June level.
Tsingshan Group and Jiuquan Steel raised their tenders to 7,000
yuan and 6,800 yuan per tonne, respectively, including
Import prices followed domestic prices higher as international
suppliers to China raised their offers.
Metal Bulletin’s charge chrome
index, cif Shanghai
, which tracks South African cargoes,
rose by 5 cents to 85 cents per lb.
"Given increased domestic prices, overseas ferro-chrome
suppliers are also standing firm with their offers to China," a
mill source told Metal Bulletin
Ore prices also continued to edge higher. Metal Bulletin’s UG2 chrome ore
index, cif China
rose to $171 per tonne on Friday July 7,
up from $169 per tonne the previous week.
Metal Bulletin’s price quotation
for Turkish lumpy chrome ore
(40-42% Cr) rose to $250-270
per tonne, cfr China.
Sentiment in Asia boosted by Chinese market
Elsewhere in Asia, for the third consecutive week, prices held
amid thin trading even as market participants agreed sentiment
Metal Bulletin assessed spot high-carbon
ferro-chrome, cif Japan
at $0.85-0.90 per lb cif on
Thursday July 6.
"The Japanese market is quiet this week but I
don’t think prices will go down given the strong
market in China," a trader in Tokyo told Metal
Prices for spot high carbon ferro-chrome, cif
rolled over at $0.80-0.85 per lb on July
"I feel the price is firming up, although I have not heard any
deals this week," a major trader in Seoul said.
European prices strengthen, US price ticks
In Europe, the ferro-chrome market recovered ground above the
top of its trading range, after dropping during the previous
Metal Bulletin’s price quotation for high-carbon ferro-chrome
in at $1.10-1.18 per lb, delivered in Europe, on
Friday, compared with $1.10-1.15 per lb previously.
Sources said they believe prices have hit a floor after steady
losses through the past quarter.
Rising chrome ore prices, limited stainless steel scrap
availability and higher tender prices from Chinese stainless
steelmakers were cited as supportive factors for European alloy
"Stock levels of high quality material in Europe are
well-balanced and traders are trying to buy high quality
material to blend with lower-priced, lower quality material
from India, Oman and Pakistan to meet third-quarter
requirements from end-users," one supplier told Metal Bulletin.
In the USA, where the smaller spot market is slower to react
than those in other regions, prices continued to inch lower,
catching up with the slide of recent weeks.
Spot prices for high-carbon ferro-chrome, in-warehouse
slipped to $1.38-1.45 per lb on July 6, down 1
cent on the low end from $1.39-$1.45 per lb previously,
according to Metal Bulletin sister publication
AMM’s latest assessment.
While inactivity and a significantly consolidated supply has
limited the price decline in the USA, some market participants
said they doubted the premium to other regions could last much
"Prices are still holding on either side of $1.40 [per lb], but
how much longer will that last?" A supplier source told AMM.
"If you can buy in Rotterdam at $1.10, it only takes a few
weeks to get over here, and you could sell easily well below
the current range. The gap isn’t sustainable;
traders will start to make this move soon if they
haven’t already," the source added.
Still, others noted the rebound elsewhere, which could preclude
"In terms of pricing, I don’t see any changes and
since China started moving back up; we may not end up seeing a
downward correction," a second supplier source told AMM.