Stainless MMI®: Nickel Prices Pushing Miners BHP Billiton, Mincor to New Heights

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The week in stainless saw more nickel miners posting big gains thanks to the price. BHP Billiton is still trying to demerge itself and sell assets including its Nickel West mines, while Mincor got back into the black in its last filing.

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Prices also got a boost this week on news from Indonesia that no changes are forthcoming to the nation’s raw ore ban that went into effect in January under the administration of new President Joko Widodo.

The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Stainless MMI® was the cash price of primary Indian nickel, which saw a 2.1 percent decline to INR 1,139 ($18.71) per kilogram. This comes on the heels of a 2.1 percent increase the week before. Following a 1.1 percent increase in the week prior, the 3-month price of nickel fell 1.9 percent on the LME last week to $18,610 per metric ton. The nickel spot price fell 1.7 percent on the LME to $18,530 per metric ton after rising 0.5 percent the week before.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were flat for the week. At CNY 8,300 ($1,349) per metric ton, the price of Chinese ferro-chrome did not change since the previous week. Closing at CNY 145,000 ($23,566) per metric ton, Chinese ferro-moly remained unchanged for the week.

Following a steady week, prices for the price of Chinese primary nickel closed flat at CNY 129,050 ($20,974) per metric ton. Prices for Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap remained constant, closing the week at CNY 16,400 ($2,665) per metric ton. At CNY 16,100 ($2,617) 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 ($2,665) per metric ton. Chinese 316 stainless coil traded sideways last week, hovering around CNY 26,000 ($4,226) per metric ton.

Following a steady week, prices for Korean 304 stainless coil closed flat at KRW 4.2 million ($3,881) per metric ton. Korean 430 stainless steel coil traded sideways last week, hovering around KRW 2.6 million ($2,376) per metric ton. The Allegheny Ludlum 304 stainless surcharge stayed essentially flat at $0.90 per pound. At $1.28 per pound, the Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge remained essentially flat.

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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