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November 16, 2022

World Bureau of Metal Statistics Press Release November 2022

The most recent metal balances report shows the primary aluminium, copper, lead and tin metal balances were in deficit and zinc and nickel metal balance was in surplus during January to September 2022. Read on to unpack the latest update on the LME metals balances.

World Bureau of Metal Statistics Press Release November 2022

January to September 2022 Metals Balances

The most recent metal balances report shows the primary aluminium, copper, lead and tin metal balances were in deficit and zinc and nickel metal balance was in surplus during January to September 2022. Read on to unpack the latest update on the LME metals balances.

Primary aluminium metal balance in deficit in January to September 2022
 
The calculated market balance for primary aluminium for the period of January to September 2022 was a deficit of 822 kt which follows a deficit of 1600 kt recorded for the whole of 2021. Demand for primary aluminium for January to September 2022 was 51.84 million tonnes, 30 kt less than in the comparable period in 2021. Demand is measured on an apparent basis and national lockdowns may have distorted the trade statistics. Production in January to September 2022 fell by 332 kt with reductions in Europe matched by increases in China and other Asia. Total reported stocks fell over the nine months to close at the end of the period 635 kt below the December 2021 level.  Total LME stocks (Including off warrant stocks) were 651 kt at the end of September 2022 which compares with 1213.4 kt at the end of 2021. Shanghai stocks decreased in September and ended the period 149 kt below the December 2021 total.  No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for large unreported stock changes especially those held in Asia.
 
Overall, global production of primary aluminium rose in January to September 2022 by 332 kt compared with the same period in 2021. Chinese output in January to September was estimated at 29.88 kt an increase of 2.5 percent year-on-year with the country recording higher availability of imported feedstocks during the early months of the year. Chinese metal production currently accounts for about 59 per cent of the world production total. Chinese apparent demand rose by 0.1 per cent compared with the same period in 2021. China became a net importer of unwrought aluminium in 2020. During January to September 2022 Chinese net exports of aluminium semi manufactures were 4473 kt which compares with 4926 kt for the whole of 2021. Exports of semi manufactures rose by 23 per cent compared with the January to September 2021 total
 
Japanese demand was up by 47 kt and US demand increased by 467 kt. Global demand fell by 0.1 per cent during January to September 2022 compared with the levels recorded one year previously.
 
September metal balances for primary aluminium recorded production at 5729.4 kt and demand at 5826.0 kt.

Copper metal balance in deficit in January to September 2022
 
The copper market recorded a deficit of 736 kt in January to September 2022 which follows a deficit of 285 kt in the whole of 2021. Reported LME stocks (including off warrant stocks) at the end of September 2022 were 48 kt higher than at the end of December 2021. Net deliveries out of Shanghai warehouses were 7.7 kt and Comex stocks decreased by 21.3 kt. Demand is measured on an apparent basis and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns will have distorted the trade statistics. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes, particularly in the Chinese government stockpile.
 
World mine production in January to September 2022 was 16 million tonnes which was 1.2 per cent higher than the first nine months of 2021. Global refined production for January to September 2022 was 18.5 million tonnes up 1.2 per cent compared with the previous year with significant increases recorded in China and India of 301 kt and 56 kt respectively.
 
Global demand in January to September 2022 was 19.25 million tonnes which was 4.1 per cent higher than the total recorded for January to September 2021. Chinese apparent demand for the period January to September 2022 was 10.71 million tonnes which was 5.5 per cent higher than the comparable period in 2021. Reported output of semi manufactures in China rose by 4.5 per cent. US refined copper production was 733.2 kt which was 6.8 kt higher than the comparable months of 2021.
 
September metal balances for refined copper recorded production at 2085.0 kt and demand was 2226.9 kt.

Lead metal balance records deficit in January to September 2022
 
The lead market recorded a deficit of 167 kt in January to September 2022 which follows a deficit of 90.1 kt recorded in the whole of 2021. Total stocks at the end of September were 43.9 kt lower than at the end of 2021. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes. Demand is measured on an apparent basis, and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns will have distorted the trade statistics.
 
World refined production during January to September 2022 from both primary and secondary sources was 10862.3 kt which was 2.8 per cent higher than in the comparable months of 2021. Chinese apparent demand was estimated at 5475.5 kt which was 161.2 kt above the comparable period in 2021 and represented 50 per cent of the global total. For the USA, apparent demand has increased by 5 kt for January to September 2022 compared to the same months of 2021.
 
September metal balances for refined lead recorded production at 1266.6 kt and demand at 1246.1 kt.

Zinc metal balance records surplus in January to September 2022
 
The zinc market was in surplus by 291 kt during January to September 2022 which compares with a deficit of 115.6 kt recorded in the whole of the previous year. Reported stocks decreased by 161.5 kt during January and September 2022 which included a net decrease in Shanghai of 20 kt over the period. LME (including off warrant) stocks closed 154 kt below the December 2021 level. Total LME stocks represent 13 per cent of the global total with the bulk of the metal held in Asian and US warehouses. Demand is measured on an apparent basis and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns have not been fully reflected in the trade statistics.
 
Global refined production fell in January to September 2022 by 1.3 per cent and demand was 5.4 per cent lower compared to the levels recorded one year earlier. Japanese apparent demand was, at 382 kt, 5.8 per cent below the equivalent total for January to September 2021.
 
World demand was 5.4 per cent lower than from the level recorded for January to Septembe

Nickel metal balance records surplus in January to September 2022
 
The nickel market was in surplus during January to September 2022 with apparent production exceeding demand by 10.5 kt. In the whole of 2021, the calculated deficit was 180.3 kt. Reported stocks held in the LME (Including Off warrant stocks) at the end of September 2022 were 46.6 kt lower than at the end of the previous year. Refined production in January to September 2022 totalled 2138.3 kt and demand was 2127.8 kt.
 
Mine production during January to September 2022 was 2297.1 kt, 287 kt above the comparable 2021 total. Chinese smelter/refinery output fell by 62.2 kt compared with the first nine months 2021 and apparent demand in China was 1121.3 kt, 98.1 kt higher than in the previous year. In Indonesia, smelter/refinery production in January to September 2022 was 787.6 kt which is 23 per cent higher than 2021.
 
World apparent demand was 54.6 kt lower in January to September 2022 than the previous year. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes. Demand is measured on an apparent basis and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns have not been fully reflected in the trade statistics.
 
September metal balances for nickel smelter/refinery recorded production at 255.2 kt and demand was 293.9 kt.r 2021. Chinese apparent demand was 5003.9 kt which is 50 per cent of the global total. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes.
 
September metal balances for slab zinc recorded production was 1167.2 kt and demand at 1161.1 kt.

Tin metal balance records deficit in January to September 2022
 
The tin market recorded a deficit of 8.5 kt during January to September 2022.  Chinese demand is calculated on an apparent basis using reported stocks on the Shanghai exchange.  Demand is measured on an apparent basis and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns have not been fully reflected in the trade statistics.
 
Global reported production of refined metal was down by 39 kt, compared with the January to September 2021 total. Chinese reported production reached a total of 116.1 kt for the January to September period. Japanese apparent demand was 18.2 kt which was 16.4 per cent below the comparable total for 2021, Apparent demand in China was 25 per cent lower than the equivalent period of the previous year.
 
Global tin demand during January to September 2022 was 260.2 kt which was 11.2 per cent lower than the comparable period of 2021. US apparent demand fell by 3.6 per cent year on year to 21.9 kt
 
September metal balances for refined tin recorded production at 29.0 kt and consumption at 30.7 kt.  

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