Iron ore extends rally to $US237, Bank of America lifts forecasts
May 12, 2021 1 min, 15 secs
Iron ore rose back through $US230 a tonne, extending its rally on deepening optimism for prices and demand for both the steel-making material and steel.

The index is up 21 per cent the past week, 35 per cent the past month and 46 per cent so far this year.

In a ‘Metals Strategist’ note, Bank of America’s four steel analysts said the recovery of the global steel market “has been remarkable” and was led by China, where a combination of strong demand and announced capacity curtailments in Tangshan have supported prices.

The analysts also said they expect Chinese steel demand to rise 2.9 per cent year over year in 2021, “with spending on infrastructure and machinery a key driver of steel consumption in the country”.

RBC Capital Markets said given the modest drawdown of steel/iron ore inventory this week and extrapolating on recent steel production data, it’s hard to argue that supply and demand fundamentals drove the recent price increases week over week, “with such movements more likely tied to speculative trading”.

In response to the latest rally, Baoshan Iron & Steel, China’s biggest listed steel producer, this week said it would limit its iron ore inventories in the short term as prices for the raw material have risen “much higher than they should”.

At least three leading Chinese thermal coal pricing indexes have suspended publication of daily assessments after spot prices of the dirty fuel surged 20 per cent within a month during what is traditionally the low season for coal demand, Reuters reported.


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