GLOBAL VANADIUM WRAP: Chinese sellers adjust prices lower to attract orders; Europe, US markets continue to strengthen

Date: Mar 27, 2018

Chinese suppliers lowered their vanadium export prices to attract orders following the sharp price rise but thin deals earlier in the month, while European and US vanadium markets maintained their upward trend amid tight supplies there.

  • Chinese suppliers lowered offers to attract orders.
  • Low availability in Europe and United States supports regional prices.

The Chinese vanadium export market reversed gains last week during Metal Bulletin’s Asian Ferro-alloys conference which took place on March 20-22, with some delegates concluding deals at the conference at lower values.

Metal Bulletin assessed fob China ferro-vanadium prices at $68-70 per kg on Thursday March 22, down by 1.4% from the previous week, while the assessment for vanadium pentoxide was $14-15.5 per lb on the day, a decrease of 4.2% in the same period.

“I quoted $69-71 [per kg] for ferro-vanadium one week ago with no spot deals closing at that range, and lowered it to $68 this week to attract deals,” a major exporter told Metal Bulletin late last week.

A delegate at Metal Bulletin’s Asian Ferro-alloys Conference told Metal Bulletin he had lowered his offer for ferro-vanadium exports to $70 per kg from $74 one week ago.

Export offers for vanadium pentoxide also fell and tradable prices ranged $14-15.5 per lb, depending on the deal volume.

“Concern that prices will soften after the biggest international gathering of the industry [Metal Bulletin’s Ferro-Alloy Conference in Hong Kong] as happened previously is one reason suppliers lowered offers,” a trader and exporter of ferro-vanadium said.

“Additionally, the tightness on domestic V2O5 is easing as major producers, like Jianlong Group, started to quote in the spot market this week,” a V2O5 exporter explained.

European vanadium market continues uptrend with activity increasing
The European ferro-vanadium market resumed strength last week, after renewed supply concerns sparked higher prices over the course of the week.

Metal Bulletin’s spot prices for European ferro-vanadium firmed to $70.15-72.50 per kg on Friday, delivered duty-paid in Europe, up 0.5% from $70-72 per kg during the midweek assessment.

Spot activity picked up throughout the week with both consumers and traders seeking out material amid limited availability.

Although discussions of potentially weaker prices arose early in the week, they were extinguished during a late-week rally which saw traders and suppliers continuing to elevate offering prices to the high end of the range and beyond.

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