This page is archived news covering the period of January 2019
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LME nickel prices and news

Stainless Steel News and Nickel Prices

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Daily Nickel Market News & Stainless Steel Prices

Nickel Prices and Stainless Steel Market

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Thursday, January 31

     China markets are closed during the first week of February for their New Year holiday

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)

  • Three month nickel closed Wednesday's trading session at $5.60/lb . Indicators at 6:25 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.04/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses went unchanged yesterday and started today's session just over the 202,000 tonne level. As you follow nickel prices, it is wise to remember that only trained rodeo clowns get paid to jump in front of a bull on the loose. Most bull runs make little sense, and as the business media scrambles for explanations, they will grab onto any bit of rumor they hear to explain to their readers why they are on top of the market. Today's explanation for a bull that has been on the run since the first of the year .... last weekend's iron ore tailings dam collapse that killed numerous people in Brazil. Maybe this will affect production at Vale's nickel mine in Brazil? And maybe not. But the business media this potential disruption in supply is the reason behind the price spikes. The fact Norilsk Nickel announced yesterday that it would increase production of nickel this year apparently fell on deaf ears. At this point, we feel the market is being manipulated by computers, that calculate faster in a micro second than a human can in a day. Thus, we will not try to explain 'why' the market is doing what its doing today, but pass on 'what' it is doing. For the month, nickel momentarily fell out of, but is firmly back in, a clearly defined upward channel. Cancelled warrants have moved from the 26% range at the beginning of the month, into the 29% range the last three trading sessions. The China steel price futures chart bears a remarkably similar appearance to the nickel price chart for January, meaning it had a good month. The Euro offered base metals no assistance in January. And the Achilles Heel to not only the metals markets, but markets in general, the trade talks between China and the U.S. are ongoing with one month left to come to an agreement. President Trump has scheduled a trip to visit with the North Korean leader later in February and there are hopes the President will kill two birds with one stone and sign an agreement with China while he is in the neighborhood. If the two don't come to an agreement and more sanctions are put into place, you might want to fire up the barbecue grill because the bull could be in trouble. This is our last update for the week, so have a restful and safe weekend. With China closed for business next week, it could be a quiet week. Then again, we won't know that until next week. See you then.   
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.18/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Base metals rise on dovish Fed; zinc hits 3-month high - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • (SO) NDRC: China’s crude steel output increases by 6.6% in 2018
  • Brian Leni: EV Demand is the Icing on Nickel’s Stainless Steel Cake - video here
  • Impact of Vale's decision to decommission other iron ore tailings dams - more
  • Stocks Pause for Breath After Fed; Dollar Slips: Markets Wrap - more

     Wednesday's market review - Nickel hits 3-month high on Vale production fears, tight supply - Nickel prices rose to a three-month high on Wednesday as investors worried that one of the world's largest producers, Brazilian miner Vale, could curtail supply in an already tight market.- more

      GRAPHIC-Climbing nickel output to cast shadow on prices - Soaring nickel output in China and Indonesia to record levels this year is expected to weigh on prices for the metal used to make stainless steel and batteries for electric vehicles even if some projects are delayed. - more

      Nickel prices must rise to meet battery demand: AABC - Higher nickel prices are required to incentivise supply of nickel sulphate for electric vehicle (EV) batteries, particularly given lower cobalt prices, delegates heard today at the Advanced Automotive Battery Conference (AABC) in Strasbourg, France. - more

      No protest against Chinese workers in Morowali nickel mining site, say police - Police have arrested a suspect, identified as I, 23, in Morowali, Central Sulawesi, for allegedly spreading false information on social media. - more

      Canada cuts staff at Cuba embassy - Canada has decided to cut the number of diplomatic staff in Cuba by up to half after another person fell ill, Ottawa says, bringing the total to 14 Canadians suffering mysterious symptoms since 2017. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Wednesday, January 30

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Tuesday's trading session at $5.50/lb . Indicators at 6:25 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.10/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Tuesday and started today's session just over the 202,000 tonne level. Nickel punched through the $12,000/tonne level yesterday and the bull appears to have been let loose. We are now seeing the traded price at levels not seen since last October. Yesterday's spike pushed nickel back into its original 2019 upward trend, which is making January a very bullish month. One analyst said that China is expected to further stimulate its EV market, which would be good for nickel. Especially in light of the fat, a scientist reported yesterday that the 15 year EV battery is a myth and most EV batteries will last 5 years. This indeed is ,and would be good, for nickel, but if one looks at the media reports out of China yesterday, it is not quite as encouraging. China announced yesterday it wants to do the same for hydrogen powered cars as it has for the EV market. Reuters carried an article yesterday (see under Reports below) where their polled analysts put nickel averaging $12,500 tonne for 2019 ($5.67/lb). China is preparing to go on a week long holiday break next week, and it will be interesting to see what the rest of the world does to nickel while they are out. But that is next week, and for this week, the bull has broken out of his fence.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.16/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Nickel hits 3-mth peak, tracks ferrous metal prices higher - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more
  • Reuters - Analysts marked down their average price forecasts for LME cash nickel this year to $12,500 a tonne, down 12 percent from the October poll. (source)

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Sluggish Start to 2019 for The Global Steel Sector - more
  • EV battery lifecycles to be only five years: Berenburg Thematics analyst  - more
  • Rethinking mining strategies among the top-10 global trends to shape 2019 - more
  • Tim Treadgold: Nickel Mines carves out a slice of the Indonesian nickel business - more
  • Stocks Edge Up Before Trade Talks, Fed; Gold Gains: Markets Wrap - more

     Tuesday's market review - Aluminium gains as traders eye falling stocks, China stimulus - Aluminium prices rose on Tuesday as investors saw the previous session’s 2.8 percent drop as overdone given falling stockpiles and efforts by top consumer China to stimulate growth. - more

      For the month of February 2019, North American Stainless will reduce the fuel surcharge to 24% for stainless flat and long products. The surcharge rate is considered a maximum level for February, and will be reviewed monthly. - source

      Nickel Monthly News For The Month Of January 2019 - As of January 24, the nickel spot price was US$5.23/lb, up from US$4.90 last month. The London Metals Exchange [LME] inventory fell yet again for the month (see LME graph below). - more

      Domestic capacity expansion lowers 2018 imports of high-carbon ferrochrome - China’s imports of high-carbon ferrochrome declined 8% year on year to stand at 2.53 million mt in 2018 as domestic capacity expansion, a declining market and limited demand from stainless steel deterred imports from entering China. - more

     Russia's Nornickel to boost nickel, palladium output in 2019 - Russia's Norilsk Nickel (Nornickel), the world's largest palladium producer, said on Wednesday its output of palladium and nickel from Russian raw material would increase in 2019. - more

      Indonesia stainless steel exports rose sharply in 2018 - Indonesia’s exports of stainless steel in slabs and hot rolled coil jumped in 2018 and will continue to grow this year as the country boosts its steel production, the Industry Ministry said. - more

     Norway’s enviro minister brings dispute on cross-border pollution to Moscow - Last Friday, local authorities in Norway triggered the health alarm and sent warnings by SMS to all inhabitants in an area in the Pasvik valley to stay indoor due to high levels of sulfur dioxide in the air. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Tuesday, January 29

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Monday's trading session at $5.36/lb . Indicators at 6:15 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.07/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME approved warehouses rose on Tuesday and started today's session just over the 203,000 tonne level. Traders appear to want to test the $12,000 tonne level today, and at the moment, nickel is trading very close to that level. Really nothing pushing the market in its current bullish direction. Shanghai nickel fell overnight, unusual in the fact the SMM typically mirrors the LME's prior session. The Euro is trading higher than it was last week, but lower than the week before, so we are not really getting any boost there. Clues on how the trade talks are going are impossible to find, but as long as the two parties are talking, traders appear to feel an agreement is likely. We suspect if the opposite is true, we could see the bullish attitude toward nickel evaporate quickly.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.14/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Aluminium prices rise; eyes on stocks after Rusal sanctions lifted - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Column: A record-breaking year for China's metals trade - more
  • U.S. Government Seen as Most Corrupt in Seven Years - more
  • Economic Watch: China adds more commodity options to hedge price risks - more
  • Stocks Mixed as Investors Weigh U.S.-China Outlook: Markets Wrap - more

     Monday's market review - Aluminium falls as U.S. lifts Rusal sanctions - Aluminium prices fell on Monday after the United States lifted sanctions on the world’s second-largest aluminium producer, United Company Rusal. - more

      CSSC: Demand lift drives China’s stainless output in ‘18 - China’s production of crude stainless steel totalled 26.7 million tonnes in 2018, higher by 933,000 tonnes or 3.6% on year, according to the latest figures released by Stainless Steel Council of China Special Steel Enterprises Association (CSSC) on January 25. - more

      Japan’s Dec stainless cold rolled sheet sales drop 6% on year - Sales of austenitic and ferritic stainless cold rolled sheet through Japanese coil centers in December 2018 dropped 6.1% year on year, and fell 6.8% from November to 55,640 mt, according to the latest data released last Friday by the Japan Stainless Coil Center Association, or JSCA, showed. - more

      Sherritt’s year end and 2019 guidance - Sherritt International Corp. has published its 2018 year end production numbers, some of which outstripped guidance and some of which fell short. The company also supplied guidance numbers for 2019. - more

     Russian industry causes dangerous pollution spike in neighboring Norway - Residents of Northern Norway were warned to stay indoors on Friday after authorities detected a smog of dangerous pollutants emanating from a nickel smelting and refining works in neighboring Russia. - more

     Five arrested, including three Vale staff, after Brazil dam disaster - Three employees of Brazilian miner Vale SA and two other engineers working on behalf of the company were arrested on Tuesday, Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo state prosecutors said. - more

  • Brazilian government considering management overhaul at miner Vale SA - more

     Courtesy AISI - In the week ending on January 26, 2019, domestic raw steel production was 1,922,000 net tons while the capability utilization rate was 81.1 percent. Production was 1,715,000 net tons in the week ending January 26, 2018 while the capability utilization then was 73.6 percent. The current week production represents a 12.1 percent increase from the same period in the previous year. Production for the week ending January 26, 2019 is up 0.5 percent from the previous week ending January 19, 2019 when production was 1,912,000 net tons and the rate of capability utilization was 80.7 percent. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Monday, January 28

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Friday's trading session at $5.34/lb . Indicators at 6:15 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.06/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Thursday and stalled on Friday and started the week just under the 202,800 tonne level. Nickel came very close to the $12,000/tonne level this morning, but has retreated some since. After falling out of the 2019 established up channel last Tuesday, nickel is reestablishing its bullish tone and appears to be setting a new positive channel, slightly lower than the last. The U.S. government reopens for business today, thanks most likely to airport delays building in the Northeast due to air traffic controller call in's, but it may only last three weeks. Technical resistance is at $4.96/lb. Week is starting with less trade news as last, and with China closing for their New Year holiday next week, it may be remain quiet for a few weeks. We hope you have a great week.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.13/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Aluminium falls as U.S. lifts sanctions on Rusal - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more
  • (Reminder) For Chinese New Year, SMM offices will close from Monday February 4 to Sunday February 10.

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • This is how clueless most Americans are about their 401(k)s - more
  • RPT-EXPLAINER-Key Issues, implications of U.S.-China trade talks - more
  • China steel mills cutting scrap use favors iron ore prices: Morgan Stanley - more
  • Stocks Kick Off Busy Week in the Red; Oil Retreats: Markets Wrap - more

     Friday's market review - Zinc hits highest in nearly three months on shortage fears - Zinc prices hit their highest in nearly three months on Friday on worries that weak refined output in China could send the global market into deficit. - more

      Global crude steel output increases by 4.6% in 2018 - Global crude steel production reached 1,808.6 million tonnes (Mt) for the year 2018, up by 4.6% compared to 2017. Crude steel production increased in all regions in 2018 except in the EU, which saw a 0.3% contraction. - more

     Ni SUS Scrap Price in January Starts with JPY100,000 to JPY105,000 = Price stops dropping in middle of month, but anticipation of price fall remains = As of January 21, the stainless steel mills in the Kanto area purchase nickel-containing stainless steel scraps (SABOT) at around JPY100,000 to JPY105,000 per ton (delivered at plant). - more

     South32's Production Volumes of Mn and Ni in Oct-Dec 2018 = Production of manganese ore is 1.439 million tons, and production of nickel is 10,400 tons = According to the production and sales achievements in the second quarter of 2019 (from October 1 to December 31 in 2018) announced by South32 on January 17, the production volumes in the period from October to December were Manganese ore: 1.439 million tons (down by 6% from the year-earlier period), Manganese-containing ferroalloys: 57,000 tons (down by 8% ditto) and Nickel: 10,400 tons (up by 3% ditto). - more

      Explorex Resources scraps plans to buy battery metals project in Finland - Canadian junior Explorex Resources has placed its plans to buy the Hautalampi cobalt, nickel and copper project in eastern Finland on the back burner because it won’t be able to secure the required funding in advance. - more

      Where Filipinos endure extreme poverty, amidst a rich land - Manila's thousands of informal settlers, living in stilt houses with thatched roofs, are the most striking faces of poverty in the Philippines. - more

      Death toll rises in Brazil dam collapse as mining company faces criticism - The number of deaths from a collapsed dam at a Brazilian iron mine rose on Sunday from 37 to 58, a spokesperson for the Civil Defense said. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Thursday, January 24

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Wednesday's trading session at $5.31/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.04/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses rose on Wednesday and started today's session just under the 203,100 tonne level. The market apparently wants LME nickel stockpiles to remain above the 200,00 tonne level. Since it fell below that level for two days early last week, the number has jumped back above and stayed above ever since. At the same time, cancelled warrants remain respectable in the 27-28% range. Nickel is trading lower today, but some of that could be due to the Euro trading lower this morning (chart). The Euro has not helped nickel prices this year, but it does tend to slow down the bull when it drops dramatically. There has been limited discussion in the market on the potential effects of a 'bad' Brexit, with the industry more focused on the US-China trade talks. We look forward to the metals analysts discuss this in the coming weeks. We linked to an article below that states China steel price futures slid on Wednesday. For the record, the futures index we follow shows prices in recovery and firmly entrenched in an upward channel since the beginning of the year. The week started with a lot of trade news, but today it was like finding water in a desert. LME nickel prices have fallen out of the upward channel  they were in. Is the bull taking a rest or is the bear about to make an appearance? Stay tuned. This is our final update of the week so we wish our readers a safe and relaxing weekend and invite you back next week.  
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.11/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Aluminium slips as near-term supply pinch expected to ease - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more
  • US Economic Briefing: High Frequency Indicators - pdf here

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Chinese steel, iron ore slide as economic concerns persist - more
  • There’s a Golden Shelter From Recession Risks With These Miners - more
  • Stocks Climb on Tech Rally; Dollar, Bonds Advance: Markets Wrap - more

     Wednesday's market review - Aluminium trades near one-month high - Aluminium has climbed to a one-month high as signs of a rise in demand caused by a fall in inventories on the London Metal Exchange attracted buyers. - more

      Western Areas advances Odysseus amid market volatility - Western Areas has shown strong progress at the Odysseus project at the Cosmos nickel operations in Western Australia, with its stage two early works program kicking off with contractor Barminco on schedule. - more

      Contribution of HEVs to Battery Nickel Demand Growth Waning - Over the past 3 years, BEV/PHEVs have become the primary demand driver of nickel in the passenger vehicle (“PV”) battery market, taking over from HEVs, such as the Toyota Prius, that (for the most part) use nickel-rich NiMH batteries. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Wednesday, January 23

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Wednesday's trading session at $5.25/lb . Indicators at 6:15 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around  $.04/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Tuesday and started today's session just over the 202,300 tonne level. Nickel fell late in yesterdays session but is recoverying this morning. More grandstanding in the China - US trade negotiations, but this could be mere cover for later - at least this is what traders hope is happening. US stainless steel surcharges for February are out - and slightly lower than last month (here).
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.10/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Aluminium trades near 1-month high on tightening supply - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Here’s President Trump’s stock-market scorecard after 2 years in office - more
  • Trump won't soften hardline on China to make trade deal-advisers - more
  • Kudlow Says China Deal Hinges on Enforcement, Structural Issues - more
  • Stocks Gain as Traders Eye Earnings; Dollar Drops: Markets Wrap - more

     Wednesday's market review - Aluminium hits near one-month high on signs of tighter China supply - Aluminium prices hit their highest in nearly a month on Tuesday as investors brushed off weaker economic growth in China to focus on signs of falling production. - more

      How China is dodging duty wall to continue dumping stainless steel in India  - Responding to the Indian government's move to levy 18.95 per cent countervailing duty (CVD) on direct imports from China, companies from that country have started using the Indonesian route to continue dumping stainless steel into India. - more

     ED&F Man files $284 million suit against Hong Kong firms, alleges metals fraud - Broker ED&F Man has filed a $284 million lawsuit against two Hong Kong companies, alleging that they knowingly provided fraudulent warehouse receipts for nickel stored in Asia, court documents show. - more

     Western Areas upbeat on nickel supply and demand - Western Areas remains bullish on the nickel price saying market fundamentals appear strong despite volatile conditions in the first half caused by geopolitical factors. - more

     PolyMet permits appealed - Environmental groups are appealing air and water permits approved for the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota. - more

     Clive Palmer’s tiny new corporate headquarters in New Zealand has almost nothing in it - Clive Palmer has opened a controversial new office in New Zealand as part of his complicated business dealings, but reports have emerged that it has been unoccupied and has virtually nothing in it. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Tuesday, January 22

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Monday's trading session at $5.33/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.04/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses rose by over 2200 tonnes yesterday and started today just under the 202,700 tonne level. Already this month we have seen gains of 2200+ tonnes yesterday, and 3400+ tonnes last Wednesday. This puts the average daily withdrawal rate at 310 tonnes so far this month. At that rate, we have over 2-1/2 years worth of inventory on hand. Quite the reversal from last fall, when it appeared we might run out of inventory by the end of this year. After a big jump yesterday, nickel is off this morning, most likely due to pessimism returning as US traders return from a three day weekend. Yesterday's news that the Chinese economy grew at its slowest rate (6.6%) since 1990 has markets nervous, and yet, also hopeful that the numbers will force China to hedge on more of its trade demands and reach an agreement with the U.S. before March 1st. It is possible that President Trump has timed his visit to meet with the North Korean leader last next month, in the hopes he can pop across the border and sign a new trade agreement with the Chinese leader on the same trip. The backwardation situation some analysts were talking about last week, did not last very long, and the market has returned to near normal. It appears the official numbers show three month nickel was lower than cash nickel for a total of - one day last week.   
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.09/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper prices extend declines amid slowing China economy - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • ‘Very Negative’ Global Impact If No U.S.-China Deal, Heng Says - more
  • Stocks Struggle, Bonds Rise as Risk Rally Sputters: Markets Wrap - more
  • ENSO Outlook lowered to El Niño WATCH - more

     Monday's market review - Copper slides, China growth data weighs on sentiment - Copper prices fell on Monday as worries about demand in top consumer China were reinforced after data showed weaker economic growth and on expectations of slowing activity ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday  - more

     European 304 stainless steel surcharge hits 17-month low in Feb  - Monthly alloy surcharges on austenitic grades of stainless steel flat-rolled products in Europe are set to fall for a seventh successive month in February, first mill announcements indicated Monday. - more

     Market Trend of Import of Ferroalloy as of 15 January 2019 = Realization sales before Chinese New Year in China slow down and market turns upward partially = The producers' realization sales before Chinese New Year holidays (4th to 10th of April) occurred during the last year, and the prices of many of the commodities dropped, but it slowed down in early January, and the current business negotiation for export focues on the shipments during February to March. - more

     DBB: Reflections On The Recent Rebound In Base Metals - In this brief article, I wish to review the recent performance of the base metals complex, the recent change in investor positioning, and the macro sentiment. - more

     Ramu NiCo facing severe sales problem - The country’s nickel/cobalt mine developer, Ramu NiCo Management’ (MCC) Limited in Madang is facing a severe sales problem. - more

     Crude Steel Production by China Hit 9-Month Low in Dec '18 - The latest production statistics published by the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) suggests substantial drop in crude steel production by the country during the last month of the previous year. - more

     Courtesy AISI - In the week ending on January 19, 2019, domestic raw steel production was 1,912,000 net tons while the capability utilization rate was 80.7 percent. Production was 1,715,000 net tons in the week ending January 19, 2018 while the capability utilization then was 73.6 percent. The current week production represents an 11.5 percent increase from the same period in the previous year. Production for the week ending January 19, 2019 is up 1.1 percent from the previous week ending January 12, 2019 when production was 1,891,000 net tons and the rate of capability utilization was 79.8 percent. - more

     Australian mining billionaire Clive Palmer shifts control of business empire to New Zealand  - Australian mining magnate and political hopeful Clive Palmer has shifted control of his business empire to New Zealand. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Monday, January 21

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Friday's trading session at $5.25/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.06/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Thursday and Friday and started the week just under the 200,500 tonne level. Nickel trading is higher this morning, but choppy. This keeps nickel in an uptrend channel it has traded in since the first of the year. Confirming news that China's economy continues to slow. And while a slowing economy would typically spook traders, in this case, with the circumstances surrounding the slowing, traders remain hopeful after a brutal 2018 market. It gives commodity traders hopes that China will #1 be more agreeable at the trade negotiations with the U.S., and that #2 more stimulus will follow earlier attempts. U.S. Stock markets are closed today for the MLK holiday. The Euro is slightly lower against the US Dollar, while the Chinese steel  price index continues to rise. Look for technical resistance around $5.43/lb.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.08/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper falls from 3-week high as slowing Chinese growth weighs - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • (SO) NBS: China’s crude steel output up 6.6% in 2018
  • Report shows wealthiest people pay less tax in world  - more
  • Former warehouse supervisor jailed after misappropriating goods worth over $2 million - more
  • China’s Economy Slows to the Weakest Pace Since 2009 - more
  • Stocks Mixed as Investors Weigh Latest on Trade: Markets Wrap - more

     Friday's market review - Base metals gain on hopes U.S.-China trade dispute could thaw - LME copper and zinc hit one-month highs on Friday as base metals gained on signs the trade dispute between the United States and top metals consumer China could be easing. - more

      Fears of a nickel meltdown are looking premature - Like bare feet on beach sand, the nickel price is running hot. At just under $US11,600 per tonne, the cash price of nickel is currently just off 10-week highs as stockpiles fall to fresh lows. - more

     Indonesia's Export of Stainless Steel Semi-products in October 2018 = Ingot is 466 kg and flat roll is 149,000 tons = Indonesia's foreign trade statistics shows the export volume of stainless steel semi-products in October 2018 was 466 kg of ingot (slab), down by 99.1% from the prior month (53,000 tons in the prior month), and 148,834 tons of flat roll (width: more than 600 mm), up by 13.9% ditto. - more

      China's Import of High-carbon Ferro-chrome in November 158,000 Tons - According to the foreign trade statistics of China, the import volume of high-carbon ferro-chrome (material quantity) in November 2018 was 158,465 tons, drastically down by 37.9% from 255,363 tons in the prior month. - more

      Miners waiting for higher nickel, metals prices - The prices of nickel and other metals prices will recover, especially when more electric vehicles are built, mining analysts say. When they do, work at Levack Mine’s Morrison deposit will resume. - more

      Numbers stack up for new Townsville battery metals refinery - The company proposing to develop a new battery metals refinery in north Queensland says a scoping study has confirmed the project’s commercial potential and given it the confidence to proceed with the next phase of assessment. - more

      Cheap, battery grade nickel? If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is - Fears of bargain-basement battery grade nickel flooding the market starting in 2019 are unsubstantiated, according to Wood Mackenzie analysts. - more

     Nickel Asia says ore shipments jump in 2018 - Nickel Asia Corporation reported the value of its mineral ore shipments jumped 20% to P17.29 billion in 2018, on the back of an increase in prices and export volume, and favorable peso-dollar exchange rate. - more

  • Philippines' Global Ferronickel holds ore shipments to China steady as economy cools - more

     Feds urged to extend comment period on mineral leases near Boundary Waters - People only have a few more days to weigh in on the Trump administration's recent proposal to renew two controversial mineral leases on the doorstep of the Boundary Waters — unless the federal government agrees to extend the public comment period. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Thursday, January 17

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Wednesday's trading session at $5.27/lb . Indicators at 6:25 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.06/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses barely moved on Wednesday and remain just under the 201,400 tonne level. After hitting $5.32/lb yesterday, nickel has been back tracking. Some of what is going on is a general negativity that seems to have hit base metals market since the US Congress voted to lift sanctions on Rusal Aluminum. Busy news day with two analysts giving opposing predictions of the future - see the market review for Wednesday for one version, the commentary for the other. And if news of strikes, closures or lawsuits isn't enough for you, we even posted news about two Australian miners - one a woman who won an award for her impact on Australian mining, the other - not so much. This is our final update for the week, so we hope each of you has an enjoyable and safe weekend and invite you back next week.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.05/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Aluminium slips after U.S. vote on Rusal sanctions - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Global Ferronickel signs China contract  - more
  • (SO) CISA: Gross profit of Chinese steelmakers up 63.54% in Jan-Nov
  • U.S. Futures Slip With European Stocks; Oil Drops: Market Wrap - more

     Wednesday's market review - Nickel hits 10-week high as spreads point to tighter market - Nickel touched a 10-week high on Wednesday as falling stockpiles and a sharp tightening of time spreads suggested an undersupplied market. - more

      Commentary: Flash LME nickel squeeze may be a taste of things to come - Short-dated time-spreads have flexed out to levels not seen in many years as a long-running decline in LME nickel stocks translates into cash-date tightness. - more

     Marex Spectron warned by executive of fraud risk -lawsuit documents - Commodities broker Marex Spectron was warned by one of its executives about the risk of fraud before it finalised a metals financing deal with French bank Natixis that triggered a $32 million lawsuit by the lender, court documents seen by Reuters show. - more

      New Caledonia nickel strike now in third week - A strike at mines run by the nickel company SLN in New Caledonia has entered its third week. - more

      KGHM to shutter Sudbury-area mine - Blaming a long slump in metals prices, mining company KGHM on Wednesday announced it was shuttering its Levack Mine’s Morrison Deposit, throwing more than 100 people out of work. - more

      From haute couture to haulpaks, Jenny Knight has the right stuff - For 25 years, trained seamstress and fashion designer Jenny Knight perfected the craft of haute couture and bridal gowns - more

      Clive Palmer back on the Forbes rich list after royalties win in Citic case - One of Australia's best known businessmen, Clive Palmer, is back near the top of the country's rich list. - more

  • 'There's no limit': Clive Palmer vows to bombard Australians with ads and unsolicited texts - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Wednesday, January 16

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Tuesday's trading session at $5.30/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading unchanged, but having recovered from early morning dip. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses rose on Tuesday and started today's session just under the 201,400 tonne level. We were going to publish daily withdrawal rates thru the first half of the month showing the rate of decrease had risen substantially since December but today's surprise rise kind of put the kibosh to that. Shanghai nickel, which up until today, has not really bought into the nickel rally, finally jumped late in its session. President Trump called back another 50,000 government employees to work without paychecks - that makes upwards of 800,000 now. Apparently the trade negotiations between China and the US have yet to be affected by the shutdown, with the markets apparently beating an agreement will be reached by the March 1st deadline. A New York Times article yesterday reported President Trump threatened to pull the U.S. out of NATO numerous times over the last year. With European leaders already at odds with President Trump over trade issues, the nationalistic stance the US had recently taken in the world arena, is threatening to jeopardize long term political, and business relationships. The Euro is trading lower since this news broke, which is adding negative pressure to commodity trading. Other than that, it is a slow news day for nickel.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.03/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - London copper rises on weaker dollar, China stimulus hopes - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • (SO) China’s stainless steel output rises by 4.9 percent in Jan-Nov
  • Trump Orders Thousands Back to Work Without Pay to Blunt Shutdown Disruption - more
  • Stocks Gain on Stimulus Hopes; Pound Fluctuates: Markets Wrap - more

     Tuesday's market review - Copper steadies as China points to further stimulus measures - Copper prices steadied on Tuesday as top consumer China signalled further stimulus measures to support economic growth and demand while U.S. President Donald Trump raised hopes of reaching a trade deal with Beijing. - more

      China's trade data weak? Not if you look at commodities: Russell - Anybody reading the commentary on China's December trade figures would be left with the impression of an economy increasingly losing momentum amid a dispute with the United States. - more

      WBMS January to November 2018 Metals Balances - The Nickel market was in deficit during January to November 2018 with apparent demand exceeding production by 6.5 kt. In the whole of 2017 the calculated deficit was 41.3 kt. Reported stocks held in the LME at the end of November 2018 were 154 kt lower than at the end of the previous year. Refined production in January to November 2018 totalled 2079 kt and demand was 2085 kt. - more

      Courtesy AISI - In the week ending on January 12, 2019, domestic raw steel production was 1,891,000 net tons while the capability utilization rate was 79.8 percent. Production was 1,715,000 net tons in the week ending January 12, 2018 while the capability utilization then was 73.6 percent. The current week production represents a 10.3 percent increase from the same period in the previous year. Production for the week ending January 12, 2019 is up 0.8 percent from the previous week ending January 5, 2019 when production was 1,876,000 net tons and the rate of capability utilization was 80.0 percent. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Tuesday, January 15

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Monday's trading session at $5.16/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.04/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Monday and now total just under the 198,000 tonne level. Nickel fell yesterday after China released export and import numbers, which took the market by surprise. Today, markets are again trading higher, on news that President Trump is promising China wants a trade deal, and China is promising more tax cuts to stimulate their economy. Even if President Trump is just trying to keep the market rally going with his comments, and China's tax cuts turn out to be more of a feel good stoke to the rally, the news that China's imports and exports are slowing could signal China will be more willing to come to an agreement. Washington could be realizing last months PMI number is evidence the trade war is affecting US industry as well. Could they be more willing to find an agreement as well? As long as they are both talking, there is hope and there are plans for more face to face later this month. It's the half way point of the first month of 2019 already. And so far this year, nickel had traded mildly bullish.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $5.01/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper steadies as China points to further stimulus measures - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Trump predicts U.S. will reach trade deal with China - more
  • Indonesia charging ahead with electric vehicle ambitions - more
  • Stocks Battle to Hold Advance; Pound Turns Lower: Markets Wrap - more

     Yesterday's market review - Base metals fall as China's exports slump - Copper prices fell on Monday as unexpectedly soft trade data in top consumer China outweighed record imports of the metal's concentrates last year. - more

      Global metals trading volumes slide on macro uncertainty: Andy Home - Investors have fled the industrial metals markets as previous trading strategies have been overwhelmed by macro uncertainty. - more

     Nickel Outlook 2019: No Boom, but Batteries Loom - Nickel was as hard hit as other base metals in 2018 as investor sentiment bled the markets, leading to lower prices even as demand increased. - more

     Steelmakers Need Reduction In Customs Duty On Key Input Material: Industry Body - Industry body Ficci has recommended a series of steps for the steel-making industry. Among the key changes, suggested by Ficci in its pre-Budget memorandum 2019-20, it has pitched for reduction in customs duty on a variety of materials used as key inputs in the steel-making process.  - more

      Panoramic Resources on track for first shipment from recommissioned nickel-copper-cobalt project - Ramp-up to full underground production is on schedule and concentrate is being trucked to the Wyndham port. - more

      Stauber introduces PolyMet land exchange bill - U.S. Rep. Pete Stauber introduced a long-promised bill Monday that would curb legal challenges to what could become Minnesota’s first copper-nickel mine. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Monday, January 14

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Friday's trading session at $5.20/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.03/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME approved warehouses fell on Thursday and Friday and start the week just over the 199,500 tonne level. This is the first time LME inventories have measured under 200,00 tonnes since July 26, 2013. Nickel prices rose on Friday, thanks primarily to reports Chinese and US trade delegates would meet again later this month. Today, the market has retreated slightly on import and export news from China that has taken analysts by surprise. Anticipating modest increases in both numbers, both fell instead, stoking fears the trade war is starting to bite. We show $5.17/lb is the next line of resistance, which was beaten on Friday. $5.77/lb would be the next line of major resistance. It appears traders are betting President Trump will agree to new trade terms with China before the March 1st deadline, and that any damage done by the spat, will evaporate quickly. What is stoking this optimism, beyond a wing and a prayer, is unknown. But if you're a nickel miner, any rally in price is helpful, while end users scratch their heads and wonder if this is the beginning of another line of stainless steel price increases.  Could be an interesting week ahead. Stay tuned.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.99/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper, aluminium fall as China’s exports slump - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments -  more  (Nickel specific report) more
  • Notice: Chinese New Year holiday schedule - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • A Chinese official explained how the country’s electric-car surveillance works - more
  • Steel market cool to China's efforts to heat economy  - more
  • China trade shock rattles European stocks, commodities - more
  • Stocks Fall, Bonds Climb as China Data Disappoints: Markets Wrap - more

     Friday's market review - Base metals rise on trade detente hopes as U.S.-China talks loom - Copper prices rose on Friday on hopes for a thaw in a trade dispute between Washington and Beijing, as the two sides prepared for more talks to resolve their issues. - more

     Investors bet on nickel prices and nickel stocks to rally in 2019 - Use of nickel has been traced as far back as 3,500 BC. In more recent times nickel has been used in coins (a nickel), but is best known for its use in stainless steel driven mostly by Chinese construction. - more

     Stainless Steel Export/Import Data for China- Till November 2018 - The World Bureau of Metal Statistics (WBMS) announced publication of Chinese stainless steel trade data for the initial eleven-month period in 2018. The exports remained more or less unchanged, whereas the imports registered notable increase over the previous year. - more

     KGHM lays off 22 workers from Morrison Mine operation - Polish-owned mining company KGHM has announced it is cutting 22 jobs from its Morrison Mine operation. - more

     Indonesia to decide on electric car policy with Hyundai keen to invest in a plant in the country - Indonesia is poised to issue its first regulation on electric vehicles on Monday (Jan 14) with officials from Hyundai due to arrive in the country at the end of the month (Jan) to discuss investment plans for a green vehicle project. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Thursday, January 10

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed  Wednesday's trading session at $5.10/lb . Indicators at 6:15 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.02/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Wednesday and started todays session just under the 203,300 tonne level. Cancelled warrants remain above the 28% level. Nickel fell overnight in Shanghai, but so far today, it is trading slightly higher on the LME. A slightly higher Euro may be giving commodity markets just enough momentum to shake off an otherwise negative vibe that seems to be creeping back in. Technical traders might suggest that is due to the fact we are on day two of testing resistance. Macro traders might suggest the optimism for the economic boost the Chinese government announced last week, has now been priced in and until China brings some evidence to the table it was successful, history mandates weariness. And the face to face trade negotiations went a third day in China, but have now ended. According to Steel Orbis, China's National Bureau of Statistics is forecasting a 6.3% growth in GDP for 2019, after an expected 6.5% growth in 2018. They will announce final 2018 results on January 21st.  This is our final update for the week, so we hope each of you has a safe and relaxing weekend and hope to see you again next week.  
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.94/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - London copper picks up on weaker dollar; tin near 6-month top - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • (Platts) Asian ferromolybdenum prices slide to lowest since Dec 2017
  • (SO) NBS: China expects 6.3 percent GDP growth in 2019
  • EU expected to clear steel import curb after Trump tariffs - more
  • China steel prices rise on consumption boost plans, trade talk hopes - more
  • Stock Rally Takes Break as Bonds Rise, Oil Drops: Markets Wrap - more

     Wednesday's market review - Copper touches 1-week high on China demand optimism - Copper prices climbed to one-week highs on Wednesday after reports of fresh stimulus in top consumer China and signs of progress in Sino-U.S. trade talks reinforced expectations of stronger growth and demand. - more

      China Stainless Trade in 2018 - Stainless trade data for China was not easy to obtain in 2018 but WBMS now has it for the period January to November 2018. Charts show data in kt (thousand metric tons). - more

      Mining cycle may have peaked, outlook bleak: Global Finance Report  - Political uncertainties, which are retarding business decisions, have led to a current "bleak picture" for the mining sector, which may have passed a recent peak, according to Mining Journal's Global Finance Report, published this week. - more

      Export Volume of SUS Products in November 2018 Is 85,209 Tons = Down by 3% from prior month, and export to Taiwan among major countries is drastically down = The export result of stainless steel products in November 2018 which was compiled by the Japan Iron and Steel Federation based on the foreign trade statistics prepared by the Ministry of Finance was 85,209 tons, down by 2.9% from 87,744 tons in the prior month. - more

      Odysseus early works start - for the $300 million reopening of the historic Cosmos nickel complex near Leinster. Barminco, which operates mining services at Western Areas’ Forrestania nickel mines, has been tapped to rehabilitate Odysseus’ underground decline, expected to start mid-month and be complete in six months. - more

    Zimbabwe trade deficit drops - Zimbabwe's trade deficit narrowed 37 percent in October last year to $144 million after total exports jumped 25 percent to $449 million largely driven by a 300 percent vault in tobacco shipments, according to latest data published by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe . - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Wednesday, January 9

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Tuesday's trading session at $5.08/lb . Indicators at 6:15 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.04/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Tuesday and started today's session just over the 204,600 tonne level. It has been awhile since we have mentioned technical resistance, but nickel is testing the first level this morning. We show $5.10/lb as the first line of resistance, with support at $4.74/lb. Face to face negotiations between Chia and the US have reportedly ended with no hints of any progress. Guy Wolf, global head of market analytics at brokerage Marex Spectron, reportedly stated in a report “Chinese data coming through confirms that growth slowed significantly, but this is all rearview mirror stuff.” We add no comment. Just think about that for a moment. His dismissal of recently negative Chinese economic news was coming on the tail end of his positive short term forecast that the stimulus the Chinese recently announced will positively impact base metal prices. And we agree - in the short term. It will do little for their economy, in our opinion, but traders like to see initiative on the part of governments, so whether successful or not, stimulus packages are good for prices - for awhile. Trade wars, on the other hand, are proving to be bad for prices. And the trade war continues - with a deadline of March 1st to come to some type of agreement - or it could get worse.  
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.91/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper touches 1-week high on China demand optimism - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Western Areas achieves key milestones towards nickel production at Odysseus - more
  • Euro-Area Unemployment Falls Below 8% for First Time in a Decade - more
  • Stocks Advance on Renewed Trade Hopes; Oil Climbs: Markets Wrap - more

     Tuesday's market review - Aluminium drops as bears attack, others wait for news on China - Aluminium prices slipped on Tuesday as bearish speculators kept up selling pressure, while other base metals were lacklustre ahead of the conclusion of U.S.-China trade talks. - more

     A cold blast from China chills industrial metals markets: Andy Home - Base metals started the new year where they left off the old one, by falling again. - more

     Eye On Mining: Gov. Walz talks copper-nickel mining - Follow the Science. That’s what Minnesota’s newest Governor Tim Walz has to say about the future of Copper-Nickel mining in Minnesota. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Tuesday, January 8

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Monday's trading session at $5.06/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading unchanged. Stockpiles of nickle stored in LME licensed warehouses went unchanged as well yesterday, and remain just under the 204,900 tonne level. Someone is buying nickel however, as cancelled warrants have risen from the 22% range for most of December, to 26% earlier this month, to nearly 29% yesterday. At the moment nickel is unchanged, but based on earlier trading today, the pressure appears to have shifted back to negative. Nickel traded lower in China overnight, but just slightly. Delegates from the US and China met for a second day in the trade war negotiations. If you want to know how optimistic commodity traders are about the trade war ending anytime soon, then watch the traded price of nickel. Nickel traders are watching the affect this war is having on China, and last weeks industrial PMI remains a huge concern. Their stimulus announced in response is seen favorable, but since this was tried repeatedly last year without much success, it quickly lost its appeal and the small bump in price it caused, has quieted.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month -  $4.89/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - London copper slips as dollar steadies; trade talks in focus - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Steel barrier at US-Mexico border could require up to 3 million st of steel: AISI - more
  • US steel prices fall to pre-tariff levels amid China slowdown worries - more
  • Germany’s Industry Shock Raises Specter of Economic Recession - more
  • U.S. Stock Futures Climb With Europe; Dollar Gains: Markets Wrap - more
  • Some recent cooling in the tropical Pacific Ocean - more

     Monday's market review - Copper steadies as traders eye U.S.-China trade talks - Copper prices steadied on Monday after the biggest rise in three months in the previous session on investor hopes that Chinese measures to boost lending would be followed by progress in trade talks with the United States. - more

      Commodity markets back Beijing's stimulus, await trade talks: Russell - Commodity markets appear to have delivered their verdict on China’s plans to stimulate its economy, betting that Beijing’s boost to infrastructure spending will work. - more

      Japan's Purchase Price of HC FeCr for Jan-Mar Down by US Cents 12 = US Cents 120 per lb, and purchase price continues dropping due to return action during April to June = Japanese stainless steel mills have continued negotiation with multiple overseas ferro-chrome producers to fix the purchase price of high-carbon ferro-chrome for the period from January to March in 2019 and have this time come to an agreement on the price to be down by US Cents 12 from the prior period. - more

     Pure Minerals acquisition target Queensland Pacific Metals strengthens ties with China - A soon-to-be-subsidiary of Australian explorer Pure Minerals has made moves to strengthen its business ties with China and the greater Asian region via a memorandum of understanding with commodity trading house Top Resources Group. - more

     Courtesy AISI - In the week ending on January 5, 2019, domestic raw steel production was 1,876,000 net tons while the capability utilization rate was 80.0 percent. Production was 1,704,000 net tons in the week ending January 5, 2018 while the capability utilization then was 73.1 percent. The current week production represents a 10.1 percent increase from the same period in the previous year. Production for the week ending January 5, 2019 is down 1.2 percent from the previous week ending December 29, 2018 when production was 1,899,000 net tons and the rate of capability utilization was 81.0 percent. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Monday, January 7

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Friday's trading session at $5.04/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.01/lb higher. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME approved warehouses fell on Thursday and Friday and started the week just under the 204,900 tonne level. Nickel trading ended the week over the $11,000/tonne and $5/lb level for the first time since mid December. While the economic news, primarily plummeting PMI numbers, was negative, the market was stared for some positive news. This came from China who cut their bank reserve ratio in order to stabilize their economy. This is positive, but it is wise to keep in mind, the Chinese government tried this four times last year - without much success. The better news, in our opinion, was the announcement Friday that negotiators from China and the US would meet face to face today for the first time since early December. Electronic vehicle sales for December in the US are in. Sales jumped from 17,100+ EV vehicles last December to 42,500+ this December. Worldwide sales estimated show an increase from 176,600+ vehicles last December to 237,500+ vehicles this December.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.85/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Base metals rise in relief rally after China RRR cut - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • Chinese steel consumption is expected to rise in 2019 - more
  • Nickel miner could set house price record with $15 million mansion on market - more
  • Stock Rally Falters as Dollar Declines, Oil Jumps: Markets Wrap - more

     Friday's market review - Copper rebounds as China and U.S. prepare for trade talks - Copper prices rallied on Friday from the previous day’s 18-month low after China cut bank reserve requirements and announced new trade talks with the United States. - more

      Greenback bull nearing exhaustion buffs metals' shine for 2019 - Metals are at a discount in a bull market that’s ripe for recovery in 2019, with trade tension and a strong dollar - the primary 2018 pressures - near a peak and losing their punch, in our view. - more

      Goldman Sounds the China Alarm and Cuts Metals Outlook - Goldman Sachs Group Inc. chopped back its near-term metals forecasts as China’s economy has “decelerated notably,” while balancing that outlook with a prediction mainland policy makers will respond by stoking expansion in the second half, aiding a revival in copper and aluminum. - more

      China slowdown a big threat to industrial metals in 2019 - analyst - Global markets plummeted this week on China slowdown worries, dragging industrial metals prices along and increasing future demand concerns, which has prompted analysts to question whether Beijing is doing enough to address the country's economic contraction. - more

      CTA partially grants mining firm’s nickel VAT refund claim - The Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) partially granted the tax refund claim of Taganito Mining Corp. for P28.93 million in excess input value added tax (VAT) attributable to zero-rated sales for 2014, but approved only P25.95 million while finding the remainder without documentary support. - more

     Man admits to stealing over $2 million in nickel cathode plates from employer's warehouse - He roped in three others and evaded multiple layers of security to carry out heists on his employer’s warehouse. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Thursday, January 3

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Wednesday's trading session at $4.93/lb . Indicators at 6:20 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.02/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME approved warehouses fell on Wednesday and start the day near the 206,100 tonne level. Nickel pulled off a gainer yesterday and we show, since the support level of $4.85/lb was not beaten for two consecutive sessions, that it held and remains our level of support. Look for traders to eye the $5/lb level as a floating board in a sea of sinking boats, as a goal to reach and hold onto. We doubt anyone expects the bearish sentiment that is paralyzing base metals to turn bullish until the U.S. President decides to end the trade war with China. And since there is little evidence of that happening anytime soon, we doubt the market will make major movements in either direction. While we have gotten spoiled on a few short weeks, we will resume normal daily updates on Monday. We hope you enjoy your first weekend of 2019 and may it be a safe one.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.74/lb
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - London copper firms after deep losses, China concerns weigh - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • The future might not belong to China after all - more
  • AusQuest gives up on WA nickel, zinc projects - more
  • Apple Woes Add to Headwinds for Stocks; Yen Surges: Markets Wrap - more
  • Oil Retreats as Chinese Growth Fears Sour Risk Appetite - more

     Yesterday's market review - Copper hits 3-1/2 month low, China data reinforces demand angst - Copper prices hit 3-1/2 month lows on Wednesday as worries about economic and demand growth in top consumer China were reinforced by manufacturing data. - more

      Review of nickel market in 2018 - During the first quarter of 2018, nickel price moved in a range bound before going downward. The main reason was that domestic consumption could not digest the flood of nickel supply, due to increased imports from Indonesia. - more

      Strike launched at SLN sites in New Caledonia - A strike has been launched at two mining sites of the nickel company SLN in New Caledonia. - more

      Cobalt 27 ups stake in PNG Ramu nickel-cobalt mine with acquisition of Highlands Pacific - Cobalt 27 Capital Corp has entered into a definitive scheme implementation agreement with Highlands Pacific Ltd dated January 1, 2019, pursuant to which Cobalt 27 will acquire all of the issued ordinary shares of Highlands that it does not own by means of a scheme of arrangement under Part XVI of the PNG Companies Act in Papua New Guinea. - more

     Courtesy AISI - In the week ending on December 29, 2018, domestic raw steel production was 1,899,000 net tons while the capability utilization rate was 81.0 percent. Production was 1,676,000 net tons in the week ending December 29, 2017 while the capability utilization then was 71.9 percent. The current week production represents a 13.3 percent increase from the same period in the previous year. Production for the week ending December 29, 2018 is up 1.6 percent from the previous week ending December 22, 2018 when production was 1,870,000 net tons and the rate of capability utilization was 79.8 percent. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

Wednesday, January 2

  Daily Nickel/Stainless Steel Briefing (7:00 AM CST is 12 PM in London)
  • Three month nickel closed Monday's trading session at $4.85/lb . Indicators at 6:30 am CST today show 3 month nickel trading around $.06/lb lower. Stockpiles of nickel stored in LME licensed warehouses fell on Monday and start the new year at 206,400 tonnes. They started 2018 at 366,612 tonnes. Nickel closed the year at $4.85/lb, below support. It closed 2017 at $5.78/lb. After gaining thru much of the first 5 months, nickel peaked on May 6th at $7.15/lb and has lost over 30% since. Nickel averaged below $5/lb in December for the first time since 2017. Thanks to the strength of those first five months, nickel averaged nearly $6/lb for the year, it's best showing since 2014. Today, commodity trading boards are a sea of red, with the Chinese monthly PMI number of 49.4 showing that economy is slowing faster than expected and recording a low not seen since January 2016. It would appear the first day of the trading year will see a lowering of support levels; not a positive sign.
  • Average price of cash nickel so far this month - $4.92/lb (average for December)
  • Average price of LME traded nickel in in 2018 - $5.95/lb / 2017 - $4.73/lb / 2016 - $4.36/lb / 2015 - $5.37/lb /

  Reports

  • Reuters metals morning - Copper hits 3-1/2 month low, China data reinforces demand angst - more
  • Reuters Daily Inside Metals - pdf here
  • SMM Evening Comments - more

  Commodity/Economic Comments

  • China Stainless Steel Scrap Market News / Price - more
  • Yieh Daily Asian Stainless Steel News - more
  • Baltic Dry Index - (chart)
  • Alloyed for Lasting Value video - here
  • Self Repairing for Lasting Value video - here
  • As US-China trade war simmers, impacts felt across many commodities - more
  • China widens ban on ferrous, non-ferrous scrap imports from Jul 1 - more
  • Rough Start to Year as Stocks Reel From China Data: Markets Wrap - more

     Monday's market review - Fears of China slowdown drag metals to weakest year since 2015 - Industrial metals prices recorded their biggest annual fall in years after signs of slowing growth in China's commodities-hungry economy and a United States-China trade war reversed a 2½-year rally. - more

      Price outlook for base metals and key factors to watch on January 2 - Opinions above collected from First Futures, China Securities, Everbright Futures, East Asia Futures, SDIC Futures, Jinrui Futures, Minmetals&Jingyi Futures, Holly Futures, GF Futures, Mailyard Futures and ITG futures. - more

      Downstream nickel PMI rises from Nov to 46.91 in Dec - The purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the downstream nickel industries rebounded to 46.91 in December, according to SMM data. - more

     NAS Press Release - For the month of January 2019, North American Stainless will reduce the fuel surcharge to 25% for stainless flat and long products. The surcharge rate is considered a maximum level for January, and will be reviewed monthly. - more

      Public Power says it will continue supplying Greek nickel producer Larco until Jan. 11 - Greece’s Public Power Corp (PPC) will continue to supply debt-laden Larco, Europe’s biggest nickel producer, with electricity until next month, extending a previous deadline which expires later on Monday. - more

     Miners dig deeper into vast Kola nickel reserve - The company, a regional subsidiary of Norilsk Nickel, has officially opened a new 440 meter deep production level. - more

      Reader's View: Land of sky blue waters threatened - It is really too bad we don't have more judges like the late Miles Lord. He would stand up for the citizens of Minnesota and not for mining interests. He stood for Lake Superior and the people who drink its water. - more

  Morning Nickel Price Statistics & Figures

  • Today's almost official prices here  /  Yesterday's actual LME official prices here or here
  • Shanghai Jinchuan nickel price - available here or here (updated)
  • India MCX Nickel Price - more  more
  • 100 Years of Stainless Steel Video - online here
  • Please let us know if any of these links stop working, stop carrying info, or become available to subscriber's only. We encourage our readers to use the services of those companies who supply news and information free of charge. Contact us

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