Nickel only declined slightly on the London Metal Exchange Friday, paring back a sixth straight weekly loss, as some investors deemed this week’s drop to a 7-month low as excessive amid signs of an improving US economy. However, nickel futures continued to decline on the LME and recorded another big loss on Friday.
US factory output rebounded in September and claims for jobless benefits dropped to a 14-year low, reports said last Thursday. The US is the second-largest consumer of metals. Global consumption of nickel, used to make stainless steel, will exceed output by 20,000 metric tons in 2015, the International Nickel Study Group said in a report dated Oct. 15.
With a decline of 5.2% on the LME to $15,375 per metric ton on Friday, October 17, the nickel 3-month price recorded the biggest decline of the day. A $820.00 decline in the spot price of nickel on the LME left the price at $15,310 per metric ton. The cash price of primary Indian nickel declined 2.2% to INR 965.70 ($15.75) per kilogram.
Chinese stainless steel prices were flat for the day. The price of Chinese ferro-chrome saw essentially no change for the fifth day in a row, remaining around CNY 8,300 ($1,351) per metric ton. For the fifth day in a row, the price of Chinese ferro-moly remained essentially flat at CNY 145,000 ($23,609) per metric ton.
For the fifth consecutive day, the Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge held flat at $1.25 per pound. The price of Chinese 316 stainless coil continues hovering around CNY 26,000 ($4,233) per metric ton for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese 304 stainless coil was unchanged at CNY 16,400 ($2,670) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap held steady at CNY 16,100 ($2,621) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap remained essentially flat at CNY 16,400 ($2,670) per metric ton.