FOCUS: China’s nickel, chrome prices set to ride stainless steel rally in Q3

The bullish momentum in China’s stainless steel market in the first half of 2021 will likely extend into the third quarter, which would underpin prices for upstream products such as nickel pig iron (NPI) and ferro-chrome, market participants say.

But several mills’ plan to put new capacity into operation could weigh on prices in the fourth quarter, which would affect the upstream market for these raw materials, according to Fastmarkets' senior analyst Robert Cartman.
Price rally into Q3
China’s stainless steel market has rallied for most of the beginning of this year, with prices ending the first half at a seven-year high.
Fastmarkets’ assessment for stainless steel cold-rolled coil 2mm grade 304 domestic, ex-whs China was at 17,200-17,800 yuan ($2,657-2,749) per tonne on Wednesday June 30, a level last seen in June 2014.
The price assessment has recorded a total gain of 19% in the first six months of 2021, from January 6’s 14,300-15,100 yuan per tonne.
Market participants attributed this “higher-than-expected performance” to strong end-user demand from both domestic and overseas markets.

Data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics shows...

Published

Jessica Zong

Sally Zhang

Siyi Liu

Yingchi Yang

July 05, 2021

09:35 GMT

Shanghai