Stainless MMI®: Most Predict Lower Prices in 2015, But Glencore Says Deficit Will Go On

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While many are predicting a difficult 2015 for all commodities metals, Glencore is forecasting a continuing supply deficit for nickel. Most prices fell for the alloying metal in stainless steel this week.

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Vale considered spinning off both its copper and nickel units.

The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Stainless MMI® was the spot price of nickel, which saw a 3.8% decline on the LME to $16,145 per metric ton. This comes on the heels of a 2.9% increase the week before. Following a 3.0% increase in the week prior, the nickel 3-month price fell 3.7% on the LME last week to $16,220 per metric ton. The cash price of primary Indian nickel fell 3.3% to INR 1,030 ($16.48) per kilogram after rising 4.8% the week before.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were mixed for the week. Following a 33.1% increase in the week prior, the price of Chinese ferro-chrome fell 0.9% last week to CNY 10,950 ($1,768) per metric ton. At CNY 90,000 ($14,532) per metric ton, the price of Chinese ferro-moly did not change since the previous week.

The price of Chinese primary nickel fell 3.5% to CNY 114,300 ($18,456) per metric ton after rising 5.9% the week before. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap rose 2.1% to CNY 9,850 ($1,590) per metric ton after falling 42.2% during the previous week. Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap saw its price rise 0.8% over the past week to CNY 13,350 ($2,156) per metric ton. Chinese 304 stainless coil traded sideways last week, hovering around CNY 18,400 ($2,971) per metric ton. Chinese 316 stainless coil remained essentially flat from the previous week at CNY 23,700 ($3,827) per metric ton.

Korean 304 stainless coil prices held steady from the previous week at KRW 4.2 million ($3,881) per metric ton. Following a steady week, prices for Korean 430 stainless steel coil closed flat at KRW 2.6 million ($2,376) per metric ton. At $0.72 per pound, the Allegheny Ludlum 304 stainless surcharge remained essentially flat. The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge closed at $0.97 per pound after a flat week.

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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