Shanghai-bonded aluminium stocks plunge in Nov on open arb; zinc shows biggest increase

Aluminium stocks in Shanghai-bonded warehouses fell by more than 50% in November compared with the prior month, with brisk import activity amid a profitable import arbitrage driving the decline, while copper, zinc and nickel stocks continued to rise.

Open arb window attracts more aluminium into China
Fastmarkets assessed the Shanghai-bonded aluminium stocks at 13,500-14,000 tonnes on Monday November 30, down by 54.5% from 30,000-30,500 tonnes a month earlier.
Stocks remain up by 37.5% from 9,500-10,500 tonnes in November 2019, however.
The aluminium import arbitrage window in China reopened on November 9 and has remained firmly open since.
For each tonne of aluminium brought into China during November, importers stood to gain an average profit of $32.72, according to Fastmarkets’ calculations. This compares with a much smaller average profit of $4.85 per tonne in the prior month.
“Profits were pretty good to bring the light metal to China, especially now with aluminium demand very strong in the country,” a Shanghai-based trader said.
This dynamic has also led to a rise in Shanghai aluminium premiums.

Fastmarkets most recently assessed the...

Published

Karen Ng

Hui Li

Sally Zhang

December 02, 2020

04:30 GMT

Shanghai, Singapore