Iron ore rebounds on improved China data, resilient demand

BEIJING: Iron ore futures prices rebounded on Monday as a risk-off sentiment, stoked by Beijing’s latest market oversight move, gradually eased amid improved economic data from the world’s second-largest economy.
The most-traded January iron ore on China’s Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE) traded 1.86% higher at 847 yuan ($115.68) a metric ton, as of 0232 GMT.
The benchmark October iron ore on the Singapore Exchange was 2.18% higher at $115.8 a metric ton, as of 0236 GMT.
China’s consumer prices returned to positive territory in August while factory-gate price declines slowed, official data showed on Saturday, as deflation pressures eased amid signs of a stabilisation in the economy.
Underpinning iron ore prices was steady demand as reflected in lingering high daily hot metal output.
“The blast furnace operating rate among mills continued to move up while a turnaround (of reduction) in daily hot metal output is not seen yet,” analysts at Huatai Futures said in a note.
The daily hot metal output among mills surveyed climbed by 0.53% on the week to 2.48 million tons in the week as of Sept. 8, the highest since October 2020, data from consultancy Mysteel showed.
Other steelmaking ingredients also advanced, with coking coal and coke on the DCE up 2.18% and 0.85%, respectively.
Some Chinese coking plants proposed a hike in their coke offer prices of between 100 yuan and 110 yuan per ton from Monday, citing mounting production costs. Some analysts expect to see a failure in this round of wrestling between coke producers and steel mills.
“We should also be careful about any downside risks (for raw materials) as long as the steel market remains weak,” said Cheng Peng, a Beijing-based analyst at Sinosteel Futures.
Steel benchmarks on the Shanghai Futures Exchange softened as demand remained sluggish, despite entering peak construction season.
Rebar slid 0.27%, hot-rolled coil fell 0.21%, wire rod tumbled 3.09% and stainless steel eased 0.35%.
($1 = 7.3222 Chinese yuan)


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