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Copper April 21, 2017 11:30:38 AM

ICSG Bulletin: Refined Copper market at 50 kt surplus in January

Paul Ploumis
ScrapMonster Author
The International Copper Study Group (ICSG) has released the preliminary data for the month of January this year in its April 2017 Copper Bulletin published yesterday.
ICSG Bulletin: Refined Copper market at 50 kt surplus in January

SPOKANE (Scrap Monster): The International Copper Study Group (ICSG) has announced publication of April 2017 Copper Bulletin, which provides preliminary copper supply and demand data for the month of January this year. According to preliminary ICSG data, copper production and usage data points to a production surplus of around 50,000 metric tonnes during the first month of the year.

The refined copper market balance for the month of January ’17 alone showed an apparent production surplus of around 50,000 metric tonnes. This is mainly on account of the higher growth rate in world refined copper production. In addition, the slow growth in Chinese apparent demand also contributed to surplus market condition during the month.

World refined copper production increased by nearly 2.5% during the first month of 2017 in comparison with the corresponding month in 2016. The primary production remained essentially unchanged during the month, whereas the secondary production increased considerably by 13%. The refined copper production during the month witnessed significant growth of 10% in China. The production by the US witnessed an increase of 10%. The expansion of SX-EW capacity contributed to the 16% jump in production by Mexico during the month. The output by Chile witnessed sharp decline of 10% during the month. The country reported considerable decline in both primary electrolytic refined production and electrowinning production. The production declined in Japan and in the US too.

On regional basis, refined output by the Africa and Asia increased by 3% and 6% respectively. On the other hand, the refined copper output by African region declined by 12%. The output by European region including Russia too witnessed decline of 2.0%. The output declined by 6% in the Americas region. The refined production of copper remained essentially unchanged in Oceania region during January 2017.

The world copper mine production has increased by around 4% during the first month of 2017. Concentrate production was up by 5.0% during the period. Meantime solvent extraction-electrowinning (SX-EW) output declined 2%. The mine output from Peru reported significant improvement of 25%, primarily on account of new and expanded capacities becoming online during the past two years. However, the production during the month was 6% lower when matched with the average production levels during the last quarter of 2016.

The Mexican copper mine production witnessed 22% jump during the month. On the other hand, the production declined by 2.5% in Chile. The country witnessed no major mine supply disruptions during the month, but SX-EW output at some mines reduced, thereby contributing to overall decline in mine output. The temporary ban in concentrate exports led to constrained output from Indonesia. Region-wise, Asia recorded 6% rise in production. Also Americas recorded 3.0% rise in output. Europe and Oceania region recorded jump of 4% and 10% respectively in mine output. On the other hand, production remained flat in the African region.

Meantime, global usage of the metal is estimated to have increased by around 1.8% during January. The usage by world countries excluding China grew at 1.9%. The Chinese apparent demand increased only by 1.7%. The metal usage by other Asian countries and some countries in the Europe contributed to the global usage growth. Region-wise, the usage by Asia increased by 2.0%. The European demand rose by 3.5% during January 2017.