Nickel Reaches Lowest Price Since May, Stainless Surcharges Follow

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Nickel prices fell on Monday to their lowest level in almost 8 months, as a buildup of the metal in warehouses continues to suggest weakened demand and plentiful ore supply in the Philippines.

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Stockpiles monitored by the London Metal Exchange have climbed 15% since Sept. 1, reaching a record this weekend. Prices have slumped for 7 straight weeks, the longest losing streak since July 2001.

After improving for two days, the Indian nickel cash price declined 8.1% to INR 940.30 ($15.34) per kilogram. On the LME, the 3-month price of nickel fell 1.9% to $15,000 per metric ton. The spot price of nickel saw a 1.9% decline on the LME to $14,925 per metric ton.

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The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge closed Friday, October 24 at $1.06 per pound, halting its three-day flat run with a 14.8% drift. The price of Chinese primary nickel was unchanged at CNY 129,050 ($21,012) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap continues hovering around CNY 16,400 ($2,670) per metric ton for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap remained essentially flat at CNY 16,100 ($2,621) per metric ton. The price of Chinese 304 stainless coil saw little movement at CNY 16,400 ($2,670) per metric ton.

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. The price of Chinese ferro-moly held steady at CNY 145,000 ($23,609) per metric ton.

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