LME tin warrants climb more than 60% amid fresh inflows; questions on market tightness

Fastmarkets’ assessment of the tin warrant premium available on the London Metal Exchange climbed by more than 60% on Tuesday May 21, reaching its highest level on record amid a flurry of higher quality stock inflows.

This week, Fastmarkets’ assessment of 99.85% Southeast Asian tin warrants, on an in-warehouse basis, soared to $20-100 per tonne on May 22, from $15-30 per tonne a week earlier. This was due to market participants reporting to Fastmarkets’ that a fresh inflow of just under 200 tonnes into Antwerp was said to be Europe-origin material of a higher quality than the LME’s minimum threshold of 99.85% tin purity. This came against a backdrop of increasingly tighter LME tin spreads, with the metal’s nearby cash/three-month spread widening to a backwardation of $320 per tonne on May 23, its widest since 2015. Several sources reported to Fastmarkets that the Antwerp cargo was delivered into LME warehouses by a distressed seller based in Europe. “The Antwerp delivery is a panic sale,” a Europe-based tin trader told Fastmarkets. “It was put on-warrant because they couldn’t find anyone to pay them a premium, and they’d have probably given it...

Published

Hassan Butt

May 24, 2019

13:20 GMT

London