NEW YORK Medium-carbon ferromanganese spot prices have surged due to renewed consumer demand, with suppliers confident of further price increases in the coming weeks.
AMMs medium-carbon ferromanganese price moved up to a range of 90 to 92 cents per pound from 87 to 89 cents previously, with several consumers entering the market for spot purchases.medium-carbon ferromanganese price moved up to a range of 90 to 92 cents per pound from 87 to 89 cents previously, with several consumers entering the market for spot purchases.
"Demand is still there, supply is still constrained, so its a perfect recipe for prices to strengthen," one supplier said.
"Prices are still not at an adequate level to cover production costs. I think 92 cents per pound will be the bottom soon," a second supplier said.
A third supplier said he made offers within current published ranges but also expected further price increases.
"If I dont book the business, I dont care. I dont need the business that much; I can wait until its 93 cents per pound," he said.
Meanwhile, high-carbon ferromanganese widened to a range of $1,070 to $1,090 per long ton from $1,070 to $1,080 previously, with suppliers again forecasting further gains.
"Pretty soon Ill offer $1,120 to $1,130 per long ton, and I expect to book it. ... The reason prices moved the last few weeks is still in play: No barges can get up the Illinois River, so if they need big tonnage in the Midwest right now, I dont know what theyre going to do about it," the third supplier said.
"There are (requests for quotations) out there for thousands of tons, so who can cover that? Anyone who might have liquidity is moving the index. Soon I think well see the same kind of price jumps we did earlier this year," he added.
However, the first supplier cautioned that the ferromanganese market could be impacted by Fort Belvoir, Va.-based DLA Strategic Materials 40,000-ton offering of high-carbon material on a long-term basis (amm.com, Feb. 5), while also questioning how long the strength in spot demand will last.
"The thing playing on everyones mind is where is the steel market going? Everything seems to point to unusual weather patterns (causing price rises), so we cant get a sense of where the market actually is. I guess well see when springtime comes in," he said.