Iron ore drops below $210/mt CFR amid ongoing futures freefall and weak steel market

Thursday, 20 May 2021 17:23:28 (GMT+3)   |   Shanghai
       

Import iron ore prices in China have moved down sharply again, today, Thursday, May 20, following continuous declines over the past few days. The weaker steel market in China, slower demand and the freefall of futures prices have contributed to the iron ore price decline.

Iron ore fines with 62 percent Fe content have edged down by $5.6/mt compared to May 19, to $208.3/mt CFR. This level is also $8.7/mt below that seen a week ago on May 13. Brazilian iron ore with 65 percent Fe has seen a drop of $4.3/mt today to $245.5/mt CFR, down $3.7/mt week on week, SteelOrbis has learned.

On May 20, trading at Chinese ports has been moderate, but overall demand in the seaborne market has been weak. The biggest deal was for 80,000 mt of 60.5 percent Jimblebar fines at the July index + $2.3/mt, for shipment from July 3 to July 12.

During the week, import iron ore prices have declined sharply amid big drops in finished steel prices and ferrous metal futures prices. Downstream users have mostly held a wait-and-see stance in concluding purchases as they have sufficient inventories. The delivery of iron ore has seen certain declines amid impacts from the weather and maintenance of berths at ports, which will provide support for prices. The production capacity utilization rates of steelmakers have been at high levels, while they are unlikely to see further rises. It is thought that import iron ore prices may fluctuate within a limited range in the coming week as users may need to build up stocks.

Iron ore futures prices at Dalian Commodity Exchange have moved down sharply by 5.7 percent today, coming to RMB 1142.5/mt ($177.2/mt) compared to May 19, while declining by RMB 74/mt ($5.0/mt) or 6.1 percent compared to May 13.

As of Thursday, May 20, rebar futures at the Shanghai Futures Exchange are standing at RMB 5,186/mt ($804.5/mt), decreasing by RMB 729/mt ($113/mt) or 12.3 percent since May 13, while decreasing by 4.74 percent compared to the previous trading day (May 19).

Imported iron ore prices in China (week-on-week basis)

Product name

Iron
Content

Truck loaded price
(RMB/mt)

Change
(RMB/mt)

Price
($/mt)

Change
($/mt)

Newman iron ore lump

63/63.5

1,750

-135

271.5

-20.3

Yandi fines

58 / 59

1,107

-223

171.7

-34.1

PB Fines

62

1,461

-184

226.7

-28.0

PB iron ore lump

62/63

1,825

-95

283.1

-14.0

Brazil fines

63

1,575

-180

244.3

-27.3

Price includes VAT.  

Nationwide iron ore concentrate prices (66 percent Fe)

Place of origin

Market price RMB/mt, Incl. VAT)

Change
(RMB/mt)

Price$/mt)

Change
($/mt)

Tangshan

1,480

22

230

4

Beipiao

1,480

-12

230

-1

Price includes VAT.

$1 = RMB 6.4464


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