Ferrochrome price in sharp rise – by Martin Creamer (MiningWeekly.com – September 26, 2016)


JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The European benchmark ferrochrome price for the fourth quarter of 2016 has been settled at 110c a pound, 12.2% up on the 98c-a-pound price of the third quarter.

Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed Merafe Resources said last month that it expected to benefit from renewed positive ferrochrome demand trends, as well as from only four of seven South African ferrochrome producers currently being in production.

Merafe – headed by CEO Zanele Matlala – generates income primarily from the Glencore–Merafe Chrome Venture. In reporting its results for the six months ended June 30, Merafe indicated higher demand prospects for ferrochrome on the likelihood of global stainless steel production growing 2.6% this year and by 3.1% in 2017.

CRU senior ferrochrome consultant Mark Beveridge, who is responsible for CRU’s ferrochrome market outlook, ferrochrome cost service and chrome monitor publications, describes the recovery of the South African chrome industry over the last four months as being “dramatic”.

Beveridge, who joined CRU in 2012 from the International Chromium Development Association where he was in-house market analyst, points out that chrome ore prices have rebounded substantially on strong second-quarter Chinese demand. “A combination of stimulus-linked demand for ferrochrome in China and a relative absence of chrome inventory led to a scrabble for South African ore,” he wrote in a document forwarded to Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online.

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