NEW YORK High-carbon ferrochrome prices have eased again, with traders forecasting further price drops in the coming weeks.
High-carbon ferrochrome tightened to a range of 98 cents to $1 per pound from 98 cents to $1.02 previously. Prices have trickled down steadily since trading in a range of $1 to $1.05 per pound in late March.
One trader claimed that sellers are "lucky" the market hasnt already fallen further, adding that prices below 90 cents per pound would be a possibility. "The world is in recession," he said. "Youve got a slow economy in China, which doesnt want to buy chrome right now, and weakening currency in South Africa."
A second trader noted that pricing drops in Europewhere high-carbon ferrochrome has fallen to a range of 90 to 96 cents per poundwere likely to have an effect on the U.S. market. "The sentiment is negative. It hasnt necessarily resulted in pricing drops yet, but there is a bearish undertone," he said.
A third trader said that production cuts would be needed before there was any improvement in free-market pricing. "Demand is not getting better anytime soon," he said. "The cuts have to come from suppliers, and I just dont see it happening."