CISA: Import iron ore prices in China to move on slight downtrend

In December this year, import iron ore prices in China indicated an overall declining trend amid some fluctuations, due to sluggish demand in the traditional off-season for business and weak finished steel prices. It is expected that import iron ore prices will continue to follow a downtrend in the coming period in line with colder winter weather conditions and the approach of the Spring Festival, as stated in a report issued by the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA) on January 6.

At the end of December this year, the China Iron Ore Price Index (CIOPI) stood at 253.04 points, down 2.60 points or 1.02 percent month on month. In particular, the domestic production iron ore price index stood at 236.31 points, down 16.05 points or 6.36 percent month on month, while the imported iron ore price index stood at 260.61 points, up 3.48 points or 1.35 percent month on month.

In the whole year of 2014, the average China Iron Ore Price Index (CIOPI) was at 337.91 points, down 123.77 points or 26.81 percent year on year. In particular, the average domestic production iron ore price index was at 297.14 points, down 61.28 points or 17.10 percent, while the average imported iron ore price index stood at 355.33 points, down 150.88 points or 29.80 percent, both year on year.

Meanwhile, the composite steel price index (CSPI) for the Chinese domestic market was at 83.09 points at the end of December, down 2.20 points or 2.58 percent month on month, remaining below 100 points for the 15th consecutive month, and so there is still a lack of solid support from steel prices for iron ore prices as demand for finished steel has entered a slack period. It is thought that import iron ore prices in China will likely continue to move on a slight downtrend in the coming period.

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