Aluminum Declines on the LME, Kobe Steel Wants an Automotive Supply Plant in the US

Kobe Steel Ltd., a supplier of aluminum sheet to half of the Japan’s auto industry, is considering building a ¥100 billion plant in the US to expand sales to Japanese automakers operating in North America.

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The prize is an expected tenfold increase in demand for aluminum sheet here in the US, where stricter fuel economy standards have ignited a race among automakers to save weight and boost the efficiency of new models, driving up demand for the lightweight metal.

The Indian aluminum cash price saw the biggest increase at 2.0%, finishing at INR 113.85 ($1.85) per kilogram for Monday, March 2. The 3-month price of aluminum saw a 0.6% decline on the LME to $1,806 per metric ton. On the LME, the primary aluminum cash price declined 0.2% to $1,794 per metric ton.

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Chinese aluminum closed mixed on Monday. The cash price of Chinese aluminum inched up 0.2% to CNY 12,850 ($2,053) per metric ton. Chinese aluminum billet prices rose 0.2% to CNY 12,860 ($2,055) per metric ton. Chinese aluminum bar prices inched up 0.2% to CNY 13,640 ($2,179) per metric ton. The price of Chinese aluminum scrap saw essentially no change for the fifth day in a row, remaining around CNY 12,500 ($1,997) per metric ton.

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