Crude Oil the Key to Future Aluminum Price Drops, Though Metal’s Value Still Holds Better Than Others

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MetalMiner’s monthly aluminum price index, the Aluminum MMI®, fell to 87 in March, a decrease of 2.2% from 89 in February. Aluminum price drops nearly across the board – namely the LME aluminum 3-month price, which fell to its lowest since April 2014 – accounted for the latest hit:

However, even this aluminum fall is minimal compared to the losses of our other metals.

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The London Metal Exchange (LME) keeps moving forward with reform of its warehouse rules. As my colleague Stuart recently explained in a post, a definition on what load-out means has been accepted. Now metal cannot be merry-go-rounded within the same facility and by the same owner.

The long-awaited aluminum premium contract will be launched on October 26. We will have to wait to see how this impacts delivery premiums.

On the production side, non-Chinese aluminum production was unchanged in January, according to the latest figures from the International Aluminum Institute (IAI). Producers are still holding aluminum capacity line in terms of keeping smelters offline in the face of low prices and historical stock overhang.

The IAI was also in the news early last month because it stopped production of its monthly producer inventory figures, saying its own members are either not submitting the data at all or struggling to do so on a timely basis.

 

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