This came against domestic production cuts, strengthening demand from steelmakers and more expensive replacement costs for alloys from overseas, which combined to elicit short-covering.
Industry sources reported an increase in buying inquiries from steel mills and in inter-merchant business, with traders keen to secure stocks for expected renewed quarterly demand for the third quarter, as well as prompt demand through June.
Prices for high-carbon ferro-manganese and silico-manganese have both hit their highest levels since early 2017. And buying replacement material from overseas was difficult, sources said, due to a shortage of containers.
“There is no readily available material around, and consumers in the steel sector suddenly want quantities, which has prompted yet more consumers to want material,” one trader said.
“There is not much material at all being imported into Europe, particularly because there is trouble getting containers and they...