Australia’s Dollar Shields its Nickel Miners

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A weakening Australian dollar is shielding the country’s nickel miners from the full force of falling metal prices, giving them an edge over rivals with operations from the Philippines to Canada, the Wall Street Journal reported.

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Nickel has tumbled 12% on the London Metal Exchange since the start of last month on concerns about the amount of metal piling up in warehouses. That has reversed a price rally since the start of the year, when a ban on ore exports from Indonesia prompted big consumers in China to scramble for alternative supply.

The spot price of nickel saw a 1.6% drop on the LME on Tuesday, November 4, landing at $15,550 per metric ton and making it the biggest mover of the day. On the LME, the nickel 3-month price fell 1.4% to $15,675 per metric ton. The Indian nickel cash price saw a 1.0% decline to INR 966.90 ($15.77) per kilogram.

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Chinese stainless steel prices closed 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. The price of Chinese ferro-moly was unchanged at CNY 145,000 ($23,609) per metric ton.

The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge continues hovering around $1.06 per pound for the fifth day in a row. The price of Chinese 316 stainless coil remained essentially flat at CNY 26,000 ($4,233) per metric ton. For the fifth consecutive day, the price of Chinese 304 stainless coil held flat at 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. For the fifth consecutive day, the price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap held flat at CNY 16,400 ($2,670) per metric ton.

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