Stainless, Nickel Continue Surge, Bank Notes Join the Rally

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Issuance of structured products tied to nickel have surged to a record this year after Indonesia, the biggest producer of the mined metal, banned raw-ore exports, Bloomberg News reported.

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Banks issued 198 so-called certificates linked to the material used in stainless steel in the first five months of this year, outstripping all annual totals in data compiled by Bloomberg going back to 2004.

The European Commission continued its investigation into unfair trade practices by Chinese and Taiwanese steel manufacturers,  this week, saying preliminary evidence shows that a steep increase in imports from the two countries has hurt European producers, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Rising 1.8 percent to $1.31 per pound made the Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge this week’s biggest mover on the weekly Stainless MMI®. With a 0.6 percent decrease, the Allegheny Ludlum 304 stainless surcharge closed the week at $0.89 per pound. Prices for Korean 304 stainless coil remained constant, closing the week at KRW 4.2 million ($3,881) per metric ton. At KRW 4.2 million ($3,881) per metric ton, the price of Korean 304 stainless coil did not change since the previous week.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were mixed for the week. Following a steady week, prices for Chinese ferro-chrome closed flat at CNY 8,300 ($1,334) per metric ton. Chinese ferro-moly prices held steady from the previous week at CNY 145,000 ($23,298) per metric ton.

The price of Chinese primary nickel fell 0.2 percent over the past week to CNY 127,750 ($20,527) per metric ton. This was the fourth week in a row of declining prices. Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap traded sideways last week, hovering around CNY 16,400 ($2,635) per metric ton. At CNY 16,100 ($2,587) per metric ton, the week finished with no movement for Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap. Chinese 304 stainless coil remained essentially flat from the previous week at CNY 16,400 ($2,635) per metric ton. At CNY 26,000 ($4,178) per metric ton, the week finished with no movement for Chinese 316 stainless coil.

The 3-month price of nickel shifted up 1.1 percent on the LME to close at $18,700 per metric ton this week. The spot price of nickel rose 0.8 percent on the LME over the past week to $18,600 per metric ton. The cash price of primary Indian nickel rose 0.6 percent over the past week to INR 1,138 ($18.90) per kilogram.

The Stainless MMI® collects and weights 14 global stainless steel and raw material price points to provide a unique view into stainless steel price trends. For more information on the Stainless MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.

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