NEW YORK Ferromolybdenum prices have dipped again, with producers complaining that demand from the steel sector has fallen notably from a year ago.
Ferromolybdenum prices eased on the low end of AMMs range to $12.50 to $13 per pound from $12.70 to $13 previously while molybdic oxide is in a range of $11.15 to $11.40 per pound, down from $11.20 to $11.60 previously.
Traders reporting that prices had fallen from last week said the decline was prompted by weaker demand.
One trader, who reported no new spot transactions, also described demand as soft. "Its been very discouraging. Its probably a month since we had a spot sale, but thankfully we dont live off our spot sales," he said. "The dearth of spot requests is very different from a year ago. Over the last few years, steel demand has shown impetus in the first quarter. Theres a markedly different change."
Indeed, molybdic oxide was trading in a range of $14.55 to $14.80 per pound March 1, 2012, while ferromolybdenum was in a range of $16.30 to $16.70 per pound.
Meanwhile, the trader said that Mexico City-based Grupo Mexico SAB de CVs plans to increase molybdenum production by 35 percent (amm.com, Feb. 26) were unlikely to significantly affect domestic pricing.
"It doesnt mean therell be more pressure to sell in the U.S., because most of that material ends up being sold worldwide," he said. "The cost of freight is so small that its not an issue, so this market doesnt think regionally."