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Kallanish Steel Weekly: Iron ore jumps to new sevenmonth record, although outlook uncertain (Nov. 7, 2023)

Issue 42, 2023 - This week's editorial: Iron ore jumps to new sevenmonth record, although outlook uncertain

The seaborne iron ore market maintained its upward trend last week and set a new sevenmonth price record. However, the price increases slowed under the influence of Chinese market rumours on Friday.

During the last months iron ore prices outperformed expectations of most analysts. In early November 2022 prices of the Kallanish KORE 62% Fe index stood at below $90/t CFR, last week they surpassed again $125/t CFR.

The Kallanish KORE 62% Fe index and the KORE 65% Fe index gained by $0.15/t and $0.49/t respectively to $127.01/dry metric tonne cfr Qingdao and $136.18/dmt cfr on Friday, 3 November. The KORE 58% Fe index meanwhile rose $0.11/t to $117.18/dmt cfr. 170,000t of PB fines sold at a floating price with a laycan of 6-15 December. On the Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE), January 2024 iron ore rose by CNY 5/t ($0.68/t)
to CNY 925.5/t ($126.7/t). On the Singapore Exchange, December 62% Fe futures and November 65% Fe futures settled $0.35/t and $0.19/t higher respectively at $122.94/t and $134.25/t. The same contract for 58% Fe futures gained by $0.3/t to $113.08/t. Tangshan billet meanwhile rose CNY 20/t to CNY 3,530/t.

The recent strong trend in iron ore has triggered market concerns. Rumours suggest there may be intervention by the National Development and Reform Commission and other relevant departments, and thus market sentiment weakened last Friday. However, there is no official announcement warning against iron ore speculation thus far.

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