The monthly Aluminum MMI® registered a value of 89 in February, on par with January’s value. On market news this month, we’ve had the following:
– Alcoa, Inc. reported strong earnings in January. However that hasn’t really helped push the stock price higher. The company’s stock surged in 2014 but it’s been flat since July 2014. Despite strong earnings and optimistic future prospects, it looks like traders are unwilling to bet higher on the stock as long as aluminum prices don’t move up.
– The International Aluminum Institute (IAI) stopped reporting global inventory stocks. Apparently, the numbers reported are more confusing than not having a number at all. Good thing we don’t really pay attention to inventory levels when analyzing prices…
Moving now to price: aluminum keeps holding relatively well despite the big commodities sell-off. It looks clear that traders have higher expectations for aluminum than for other commodities, but will that be enough to support prices?
It’s hard to make predictions at this point, but the environment is not helping, for sure. First, commodities keep falling as oil sinks and this might punish aluminum even more since low oil prices won’t help encourage the use of lightweighted cars. Second, in January the dollar hit an 11-year high and finally, commodity weakness is spreading into base metals.
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Korean 1050 aluminum sheet reached $3.90 per kilogram after a 16.3% increase for the month. The price of Korean 3003 coil premium over 1050 sheet jumped 9.9% last month to $3.74 per kilogram. Korean 5052 coil premium over 1050 sheet prices rose 9.5% to $3.87 per kilogram. After dropping the previous month, the price of European 1050 aluminum prices rose 4.7% to $2,968 per metric ton. The price of European 5083 plate rose 1.9% to $3,285 per metric ton after falling the previous month. After dropping the previous month, the primary aluminum cash price prices rose 0.2% on the LME to $1,837 per metric ton.
At $1,948 per metric ton, Chinese aluminum scrap was down 3.2% for the month. Last month, the cash price of primary Indian aluminum dropped 2.6% to $1.87 per kilogram. At $2,028 per metric ton, the Chinese aluminum cash price was down 2.2%. At $2,030 per metric ton, Chinese aluminum bar was down 2.2% for the month. With a 0.4% decline on the LME, the 3-month price of aluminum closed the month at $1,846 per metric ton.
Hovering around $2,108 per metric ton for the month, Chinese aluminum billet remained unchanged.
The Aluminum MMI® collects and weights 12 global aluminum price points to provide a unique view into aluminum price trends over a 30-day period. For more information on the Aluminum MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.