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Ferrovanadium tags soften further; moly steady

Keywords: Tags  ferrovanadium prices, ferrovanadium demand, molybdenum prices, molybdic oxide prices, molybdenum demand, ferromolybdenum, Daniel Fitzgerald

NEW YORK — Ferrovanadium spot prices have softened further as suppliers continue to bow out of the spot market, while molybdenum prices appear to have settled after tailing off in recent weeks.

Ferrovanadium dropped to a range of $12.50 to $12.75 per pound from $12.50 to $13 previously, having peaked above $14 per pound in late April (, April 25).

Prices have dropped consistently over the summer, with many producers choosing to focus on servicing contract business due to high offtake levels, while some traders have opted to liquidate their positions (, July 11).

"We are now withdrawing from the spot market for a bit as the situation is a bit unstable and I think upward price movement is coming," one trader told AMM July 31.

"The low prices should stop as steel capacity is at its strongest levels since 2012 and North America is extremely strong for all steel companies," a producer source said. "There was no summer slowdown this year."

Meanwhile, molybdic oxide is unchanged at $13 to $13.50 per pound, while ferromolybdenum also is steady in a range of $16.50 to $17 per pound.

Moly spot pricing began to reverse course in June (, June 20) after skyrocketing throughout April and May due to tightening supply amid rampant demand (, May 16).

"Truthfully, there is a bit of a slowdown in terms of overall market activity with vacation schedules and outages. But with contract customers, their draw is very consistent despite those outages. So even if the spot market is slow, I don’t think the underlying demand is slow," a producer source said. "I think the spot market will return when the summer holidays are over. $15 per pound for molybdic oxide was not necessarily realistic in terms of the supply-demand equation, and selling under $13 is probably a bit low too. Somewhere between those two is more accurate in terms of the demand we’re seeing. We aren’t seeing wild swings in customer demand, so it’s been driven more by emotion and speculation."

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