NEW YORK Domestic suppliers of high-carbon ferrochrome have
expressed concern that DLA Strategic Materials offer this
past week, the first in 17 months, may lead to a further
decrease in prices.
"It wasnt encouraging;
lets put it that way," one trader said, citing the
current weak market environment.
Domestic high-carbon ferrochrome
prices are now between $1 and $1.03 per pound, a 34-month low,
with truckload sales reported in that range this past week.
The offer was for 1,000 tons of
65-percent (chrome contained) material from the agencys
Point Pleasant, W.Va., depot, an agency spokesman told
The Fort Belvoir, Va.-based
agency, which is permitted to sell 65,204 tons of ferrochrome
in the current fiscal year, has not offered high-carbon
ferrochrome since May 2011.
While sources said a sale would
add to oversupply in the domestic market, some took comfort in
the knowledge that interest might be scant.
"Im not thrilled about
(the offer), but it takes a brave man to go out there (and buy
it) in this market," a second trader said.
Demand from stainless mills, the
largest consumers of ferrochrome, especially has fallen in
recent months as their customers are loathe to hold inventory
due to uncertainty surrounding the upcoming presidential
elections and volatile nickel prices.
Stainless distributors told AMM that they were
holding back from buying until the outcome of the election is
clear. Some said they will buy more stainless should Mitt
Romney win the election given the perception that he is more