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10 Feb 2017 by Metal-Pages
WEEK IN REVIEW: Metals wait for their turn in the spotlight

LONDON (Metal-Pages) 10-Feb-17.  Cobalt prices broke through $18/lb resistance this week, rising to a nearly six-year high, helped by investor appetite for the metal set to benefit from the electric vehicles growth.   With limited availability from producers and trade inventory held in few hands, supply to the spot market is constrained. The increase in prices is yet to bring shuttered capacity back online, and in the meantime traders are targeting the next $19-20/lb level.   But most other metal markets were still looking for direction after the public holidays in China as suppliers and buyers are starting to return to the market.  Antimony suppliers are also looking for a price increase, as the idling of smaller plants in China on environmental grounds is leaving fewer but larger producers with a stronger position in the market. Prices rose to a four-month high this week, and sellers are targeting $8,000/t level, but against resistance from buyers.   A reduction in prices of manganese and chrome ores since January has not yet impacted ferro-alloys, and this week saw increases in prices of ferro-chrome in the US and of ferro-manganese in Europe on buying interest and tightening supply. There were indications that manganese prices may be bottoming out in Europe although cheaper shipments booked before the new year holidays in China are due to arrive later this month, and the market in China is waiting for buyers to come back.   This week saw the new US president, who has publicly favoured import taxes, take a more conciliatory tone with China as Goldman Sachs analysts sounded alarm bells about a potential trade war between two countries. And an EU-China business meeting in Brussels raised the prospect of liberalisation of European-China trade even if the US opts to put up barriers. “If others are closing their doors, ours is still open. As long as the trade is fair,” EU Trade Commissioner ...

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Minor and specialty metals
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Tue 11:46 AMSA agrees steel pricing model with Pretoria
Tue 11:36 US, China tensions on semiconductors
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Mon 17:57 India extends AD duties on Chinese tubes, pipes
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Ferro Alloys
Tue 11:56 China’s steel capacity cuts switch focus: Update
Tue 11:53 S Africa central bank approves Stillwater deal
Tue 11:46 AMSA agrees steel pricing model with Pretoria
Tue 11:29 BHP Billiton focuses on portfolio not acquistions
Mon 17:57 India extends AD duties on Chinese tubes, pipes
Mon 16:27 Silicon alloys lift Ferbasa January output
Mon 14:02 India’s Facor wins approval for FeCr capacity expansion
Mon 12:12 South32/AusQuest form exploration alliance
Rare Earths
Mon 15:34 Peak eyes fluorite at Tanzania RE project

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