Stainless MMI®: Nickel Falls as Surplus Weighs it Down for the Week

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Global output of nickel is still outstripping demand, leading to a big weekly loss on the London Metal Exchange this week for the alloying metal in stainless steel.

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Its fall this week has erased much of what it gained early in the new year in a short rally.

The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Stainless MMI® was the Indian nickel cash price, which saw a 7.8% decline to INR 910.00 ($14.68) per kilogram. This comes on the heels of a 1.5% increase the week before. The 3-month price of nickel fell 5.8% on the LME to $14,625 per metric ton after rising 4.1% the week before. Following a 4.0% increase in the week prior, the nickel spot price fell 5.8% on the LME last week to $14,550 per metric ton.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were mixed for the week. The price of Chinese ferro-moly declined 1.1% over the past week, settling at CNY 87,000 ($14,068) per metric ton. The price of Chinese ferro-chrome rose 0.5% to CNY 10,950 ($1,771) per metric ton after falling 0.5% during the previous week.

The price of Chinese primary nickel fell 3.5% to CNY 107,500 ($17,383) per metric ton after rising 2.5% the week before. Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap saw a 3.1% drop-off this week to end at CNY 9,350 ($1,512) per metric ton. Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap prices were off slightly at CNY 12,950 ($2,094) per metric ton, down from CNY 13,150 ($2,117) a week ago. At CNY 16,700 ($2,700) per metric ton, the week finished with no movement for Chinese 304 stainless coil. At CNY 23,700 ($3,832) per metric ton, the price of Chinese 316 stainless coil did not change since the previous week.

Korean 304 stainless coil traded sideways last week, hovering around KRW 4.2 million ($3,881) per metric ton. Prices for Korean 430 stainless steel coil remained constant, closing the week at KRW 2.6 million ($2,376) per metric ton. At $0.76 per pound, the Allegheny Ludlum 304 stainless surcharge remained essentially flat. The Allegheny Ludlum 316 stainless surcharge traded sideways last week, hovering around $1.01 per pound.

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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