Iron ore inventory increases at Chinese ports
As of March 16, inventory of iron ore at 33 major Chinese ports amounted to 98.40 million mt, up 2.06 million mt or 2.14 percent compared to the inventory level recorded on March 9, as announced by China’s Xinhua News Agency on March 17.
As of the same date, the Xinhua-China Iron Ore Price Index for imported iron ore with 62 percent iron content was at 58 points, down one point week on week. Meanwhile, the Xinhua-China Iron Ore Price Index for imported iron ore with 58 percent iron content was at 49 points on the date in question, down two points compared to the previous week.
At the beginning of the given week, imported iron ore prices indicated a downtrend, while at the same time domestic production iron ore prices followed the trend of imported iron ore prices. However, the decline in prices has not stimulated transaction activity, with bearish sentiment prevailing in the market. In the latter part of the week, with billet prices in Tangshan moving on a rising trend, imported iron ore prices started to recover, with traders increasing their iron ore offer prices by $1-2/mt. Currently, steelmakers are coming under pressure from tight liquidity and environmental protection measures, and so they are mainly adopting a cautious stance as regards iron ore purchases. It is thought that imported iron ore prices in the Chinese market will likely move on a stable trend in the coming week.