BHP Billiton Iron Ore Business Booms, LME Steel Billet Crash-n-Burn

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BHP not feeling an iron ore slowdown just yet, as output and stock prices for the mining company rose.

BHP Billiton’s most profitable business, its iron ore operations in Western Australia, hit 45 million metric tons of iron ore production in the three months up to June, up 37.6 million tons from the previous quarter and “ahead of analyst forecasts, BHP said in a production update today, according to the Financial Times.

However, even though its oil business suffered 4 million barrels short of where the company said it’d be in June, BHP Billiton’s shale gas exploits in the United States are paying off. Clearly, the natural gas industry here is a huge story moving forward, and we’ll keep tabs on the latest.

Meanwhile, LME steel billet prices bombed again, and the contract is at its lowest in recent memory:

The day’s biggest mover was the cash price of steel billet which dropped by 23.8 percent on Tuesday, July 16 to close at $99.00 per metric ton on the LME. The steel billet 3-month price fell 22.6 percent to a 30-day low on the LME of $120.00 per metric ton on Tuesday.

Chinese steel closed mixed on Tuesday. The price of iron ore 58% fines from India remained rangebound.

* Get the complete prices every day on the MetalMiner IndX℠

Chinese slab saw its price rise 0.3 percent. The price of Chinese HRC remained steady.

The 3-month price of the US HRC futures contract held steady around $610.00 per short ton. The spot price of the US HRC futures contract saw little movement at $635.00 per short ton.

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