China’s monthly imports of most major commodities rose in November on favorable prices and stockpiling, although a gloomy outlook for steel dragged iron ore arrivals down to their second lowest this year.
Year-on-year comparisons were, however, lackluster with double-digit percentage drops in coal and iron ore imports and a near 4% decline in copper shipments, reflecting China’s waning appetite for commodities as its economic growth slows to the weakest since the global financial crisis.
With a decline of 9.9% to CNY 2,900 ($469.67) per metric ton on Tuesday, December 9, Chinese slab recorded the biggest price drift of the day. The price of Chinese HRC rose 3.7% yesterday, just off the 30-day low of CNY 3,060 ($495.58) per metric ton it hit on Friday, December 5. The price of Chinese coking coal remained essentially flat at CNY 1,080 ($174.91) per metric ton. The price of iron ore 58% fines from India hit a high price of CNY 840.00 ($136.04) and a low price of CNY 840.00 ($136.04) per dry metric ton.
The cash price of steel billet was unchanged on the LME at $500.00 per metric ton. The 3-month price of steel billet saw little movement on the LME at $480.00 per metric ton.
After holding steady for the past few days, the 3-month price of the US HRC futures contract fell 1.4%, closing at $616.00 per short ton. The US HRC futures contract spot price weakened by 0.3%, settling at $616.00 per short ton.