Here at MetalCrawler, a mini-rally in Chinese nickel has us questioning the downward trend our favorite stainless steel alloying metal is in.
Is Chinese Stockpiled Nickel Ore Finally Running Dry?
Reuters’ Andy Home writes that supply stresses in China’s giant nickel pig iron (NPI) sector are accumulating. China’s nickel ore imports slumped below 1 million metric tons in February for the first time since February 2010.
Home writes that, at some point, China will return in a big way to the import market, pushing the global market into supply deficit.
Oil Prices Back on the Rise
Oil prices rose Friday ahead of the release of US drilling data and amid uncertainty about Iranian nuclear negotiations.
Light, sweet crude for May delivery climbed 1%, to $51.29 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent, the global benchmark, rose $1.11, or 2%, to $57.68 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe.
The moves capped a volatile week of trading, as investors continued to assess the global glut of oil that sent prices plunging in 2014. Both contracts were on track to post a weekly gain.