NEW YORK Silicomanganese
reportedly is "in the doldrums" and "undervalued," with traders
saying that the material has failed to record the same price
gains seen by ferrosilicon since the start of 2013.
Silicomanganese continued to
trade in a range of 52 to 56 cents per pound Feb. 14 , while
ferrosilicon held at between 92 and 95 cents per pound.
However, while silicomanganese
has fallen from a pre-Thanksgiving range of 58 to 60 cents per
pound, ferrosilicon has increased from a range of 87 to 90
cents before the November holiday.
"Silicomanganese is clearly
undervalued in the low 50s compared to where ferrosilicon is,"
one trader said.
Traders told AMM that
ferrosilicon prices firmed this past week, particularly with a
reported lack of cheaper imports entering the market.
"A lot of Chinese material
didnt come in because its not competitive.
Theyve not really been talking because of the Chinese New
Year (holiday), though," a second trader said.
The first trader said
silicomanganeses relative pricing weakness was
contributing to a lack of imports from Europe, with the euro
currently equivalent to about $1.34. "If you compare to the
European transacted prices today and multiply that by the
exchange rate, you come to a price of about 57 cents. Unless
the U.S. can get up to that level, its all going to stay
in Europe," he said.
Meanwhile, two silicomanganese
traders told AMM of a request for quote for around 500
tonnes from a major electric-arc furnace steel mill, although
it was not confirmed first-hand.
"Silicomanganese is still in the
doldrums, but there are some major (requests for quotes) out
there," a third trader said.