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Tin May 19, 2017 10:30:03 AM

World Nickel, Zinc markets record surplus, Tin ends in deficit during Q1 '17

Paul Ploumis
ScrapMonster Author
Global Nickel market ended in marginal surplus of 3,300 tonnes in the initial quarter of the current year.
World Nickel, Zinc markets record surplus, Tin ends in deficit during Q1 '17

SPOKANE (Scrap Monster):  The latest Metals Balances Report released by the World Bureau of Metal Statistics (WBMS) indicates that Nickel market has ended in a marginal surplus during Jan-Mar ’17. Also, Zinc market has recorded slight surplus during this period. Meantime, the WBMS data suggests that global Tin market ended in deficit during Q1 ’17.

Nickel

Global nickel market ended in marginal surplus of 3,300 tonnes during the initial three-month period of the year from January to March with apparent production exceeding demand. The calculated full year deficit had stood at 62 kt during the whole year 2016, according to WBMS.

The statistics indicate that that reported stockpiles maintained by LME were 4.4 kt higher at the end of the first quarter this year when matched with the closing levels of 2016.

Production

World Nickel mine production was 417 kt in January-March 2017, considerably lower by 47.0 kt when compared with the corresponding period during previous year. The ban on exports by Indonesian administration has led to reduced mine output from the country. In addition, the local mine production from the country has continued to remain extremely weak ever since the beginning of 2014.

Refined Nickel production in Jan-Mar ’17 was 391.5 kt. The Chinese smelter/refinery production during the initial three-month period of the year witnessed decline of 17.0 kt compared to 2016. Meantime, demand edged lower by 70 kt in comparison with the previous year, mainly on account of reduced imports of Nickel metal from Russia. The total smelter/refinery production of Nickel was 129.6 kt in March 2017.

Demand

The world apparent demand in Q1 ’17 was down by 43.0 kt when matched with the year before. Nickel smelter consumption was 143.70 kt in March this year.

The refined Nickel demand during the first quarter of the year totaled 388.20 kt.

Tin

The worldwide Tin market has recorded a marginal deficit during January to March this year. There were no DLA deliveries during the three-month period, the data said.

As per WBMS data, the global Tin market recorded slight deficit of 1.50 kt during the initial three months of the year from January to March in 2017.

Global refined Tin production edged higher by 5.60 kt during the three-month period. The Asian production increased by 1.1 kt during Jan-Mar ’17, when matched with the production during the corresponding period last year.

The global demand for the metal has declined by 2.60% when matched with January to March in 2016. The demand totaled 92.30 kt during this period. The Chinese apparent demand saw significant uptick of 2.5% over the previous year. The Japanese consumption totaled 7.60 kt, significantly higher by 21% when compared with the demand recorded during January to March in 2016.

The reported stock of the metal declined during March this year. The stock at the end of the first three months in 2017 was lower by 1.0 kt when compared with Dec ’16 closing levels. The reported stocks decreased by nearly 2.50 kt during the month of March 2017.

During the month of March alone, the global refined Tin production totaled 30.5 kt, as against the demand of 31.90 kt.

Zinc

The worldwide zinc market has recorded surplus during January to March this year. It must be noted that the zinc market had ended in deficit in the whole of 2016.

As per WBMS data, the global zinc market recorded surplus of 86 kt during the initial three months of the current year from January to March. It should be noted that the worldwide zinc market had reported a deficit of 235 kt during the entire year 2016.

Global refined zinc production climbed higher by 4.40% during the initial three-month period of 2017. The Chinese production of locally refined zinc too has increased by nearly 4.40% when compared with 2016.

The global demand for the metal witnessed rise of 95 kt when matched with January to March in 2016. The Chinese apparent demand totaled 1,510 kt and accounted for nearly 45.4% of the global total. The Japanese demand for the metal surged higher significantly by 20% when matched with the levels recorded during Jan-March ’16. The demand during the three-month period totaled 138.8 kt.

The reported stock of the metal jumped higher by 21 kt during the month of March this year. Also, LME zinc stocks dropped by 13,000 tonnes during the month of March and accounted for 37% of the global stock of the metal. The LME stock levels at the end of March this year were 57.0 kt lower when matched with end-2016 levels.

The Chinese zinc metal imports, mostly special high grade zinc dropped by 123.0 kt during Jan-March ’17 to 58 kt when compared with the imports during the same period last year. The imports of metal by China totaled 26 kt during the month of March this year.

The zinc slab production during March ’17 totaled 1,146.80 kt and the consumption totaled 1,135.60 kt.

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