Lead conc TCs drop after April arb business; zinc terms begin to rise

Treatment charges for lead concentrates fell sharply in April after the arbitrage between Shanghai and London prices encouraged more imports into China, sources said.

Fastmarkets’ lead spot concentrate TC, low silver, cif China assessment was $55-65 per tonne on April 30, a 20-month low and down from an $80-100-per-tonne range in March.
Lead concentrates with a low silver content are historically more popular for imports into China because a ban on silver exports has depressed local prices for the precious metal.
"There was a positive arbitrage on lead although there isn't massive demand," a trading source said.
Some smelters in China are hesitant to buy at current levels due to the sharply lower terms but some sources pointed to a lack of product availability on cargoes heading to the country.

This is in part because of a spike in container freight rates, which are now double or triple what they were toward the end...


Archie Hunter

May 04, 2021

11:10 GMT