This Morning in Metals: Nickel Prices Fall on the Heels of Earlier Surge

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This morning in metals news, the nickel price rally appears to have lost some steam, iron ore prices have started to come back down to earth and a Chinese company pulls out of the bidding for British Steel.

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Nickel Price Slides

After surging earlier this month, the nickel price has come back down this week.

LME nickel was bid down 3.6% in official rings Thursday, Reuters reported, one week after the metal reached its highest price in a year.

Iron Ore Pendulum Swings Back

Iron ore miners have benefited from a skyrocketing price of the steelmaking raw material this year, surging well past $100 per ton.

Iron ore has received supply-side support from events in Brazil and Australia this year. In January, a tailings dam collapsed at Vale’s Corrego do Feijao mine in Brazil, killings hundreds. In addition, adverse weather conditions impacted iron ore operations in Western Australia.

However, the iron ore price has started to come back down; Australian miners are feeling the effect. In addition to the falling iron ore price, news of a potential ramp-up of production by Vale helped push shares down for a number of iron ore miners, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

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Rio Tinto, for example, saw its shares fall 4.2% Thursday, while BHP fell 1.8% and Fortescue Metals Group dropped 5.5%.

Chinese Company Pulls Out of British Steel Bidding

After British Steel was ordered into liquidation in May, companies had the opportunity to bid for the troubled firm — the U.K.’s second-largest steelmaker — as thousands of jobs hang in the balance.

According to the Financial Times, however, Chinese company Jingye Group has pulled out of the bidding, despite reportedly having previously put in a bid to acquire the entire business. There has been speculation regarding whether or not British Steel would be able to find a buyer for the entire business, as opposed to interest in parts of its assets.

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