aluminum price

As we asked last week, will China be the driver of commodities demand it was in the last decade?

The process of urbanization, in which hundreds of millions have moved to cities from the countryside, has been a big driver of the commodities super-cycle in the past ten years, particularly for materials like iron ore, steel and cement, but also copper and aluminum.

The pace of migration, though, has begun to level off and the FT quotes Macquarie Bank, which forecast that China’s steel demand could peak between 2020 and 2025.

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The cash price of primary Chinese aluminum saw a 0.4 percent drop on June 6, 2012, making it the biggest mover of the day on global aluminum markets.

Chinese aluminum billet ended the day after a 0.2 percent drop yesterday. The price of Chinese aluminum bar held steady at above $2,200 per metric ton. Chinese aluminum scrap stayed flat at below $2,600 per metric ton.

Wednesday saw Indian aluminum cash price drift down 0.3 percent after a couple of stagnant days.

On the LME, the 3-month price of aluminum showed little movement yesterday, hovering around $1,979 per metric ton. The cash price of primary aluminum remained essentially flat on the LME at $1,936 per metric ton.

Check out this month’s Aluminum MMI® report.

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The monthly Automotive MMI® registered a value of 98 in June, a decrease of 6.7 percent from 105 in May.

The Automotive MMI® has held up strongly through May 1, but fell 2 percent below the January baseline value during the past 30 days. The Automotive MMI® baseline began on Jan. 1, 2012, with a reading of 100. This report serves as the first public release of this data.

Source: MetalMiner IndX℠

For commentary and drivers of the index, click below.

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The monthly Construction MMI® registered a value of 93 in June, a decrease of seven percent from 100 in May.

The Construction MMI® had held steady since the beginning of this year, but fell this past month along with all of the other MMI® index values. The Construction MMI® baseline began on January 1, 2012, with a reading of 100. This report serves as the first public release of this data.

Source: MetalMiner IndX℠

For more commentary and the drivers of this month’s index decline, click below.

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The week’s biggest mover on this week’s Construction MMI® was the weekly US Gulf Coast bar fuel surcharge, which saw a 4.1 percent decline. The weekly US Midwest bar fuel surcharge fell 3.9 percent from the previous week as well. Also, the weekly US Rocky Mountain bar fuel surcharge declined 2.4 percent since last week.

Chinese steel and US scrap prices saw some movement, however.

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The biggest change on the global aluminum markets tracked by the MetalMiner IndX℠ came when the Chinese aluminum cash price came out of a two-day slump with a 0.4 percent improvement on June 5, 2012.

Chinese aluminum billet, meanwhile, saw an increase, while other price points kept their value.

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On June 4, 2012, the day’s biggest mover on global aluminum markets was the LME aluminum cash price, which saw a 1.9 percent decline to $1,936 per metric ton.

Also on the LME, the aluminum 3-month price declined 1.7 percent to $1,979 per metric ton.

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The monthly Aluminum MMI® registered a value of 98 in June, a decrease of 3.9 percent from 102 in May. The Aluminum MMI® baseline began on January 1, 2012, at a value of 100. This report serves as the first public release of this data.

Source: MetalMiner IndX℠

(Editor’s Note: Data will be presented in graph format, but we caution readers to note the range on the Y-axis.)

To drill down to the drivers, and to get more commentary, click below.

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On June 1, 2012, the cash price of primary Indian aluminum fell by 2.7 percent, making it the day’s biggest mover on global aluminum markets.

On the LME, the 3-month price of aluminum increased 0.8 percent to $2,013 per metric ton. After a 0.8 percent increase, the primary aluminum cash price finished the day on the LME at $1,973 per metric ton.

Chinese aluminum prices finished mixed on June 1.

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Continued from Part One.

In the last couple of months, NALCO has been charging a more than $150 per ton premium on its export tenders. Bagra felt that prices would swing between the $2,100 and $2,300 mark until the end of 2012.

Reuters had reported on May 11 that NALCO had sold 12,000 metric tons of aluminum ingots at a $160 per ton premium over the average LME cash price on a CIF basis. Ansuman Das, NALCO commercial director, had been quoted by the news agency that the company would be shipping the consignment to a London-based buyer in six batches from May to October.

In April, too, NALCO had sold a similar quantity of aluminum ingots at a $152 per ton premium over the average LME cash price on a cost, insurance and freight basis to a South Korean buyer.

NALCO had also last week raised aluminum prices by Rs 4,000 per ton across all products in the domestic market, taking it to Rs 142,700 per ton, to be more in sync with LME prices. This came alongside news of the company reporting a decline of 7.6 percent in its net profit at approximately $56 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2012, largely due to higher fuel costs and lower aluminum sales. The aluminum major had reported a net profit of approx $63 million during the corresponding period last year.

The company’s realizations on aluminum sales were down by about 11.5 percent during the quarter, largely due to lower prices on the LME, even as its power and fuel expenses rose by over 4 percent in the reported quarter.

As part of NALCO’s expansion plans, the company now intends to set up an aluminum park. It recently invited entrepreneurs to set up downstream and upstream units in this park. The park will come up adjacent to its Nalco Smelter Plant at Angul in Odisha State, with an aim to increase metal consumption within the state and get benefits for all micro, small and medium entrepreneurs (MSMEs).

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