Monthly Ferrous Futures Report – November 2021

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  • The ferrous complex was weaker across the board in November.
  • Iron Ore spot dipped below 100 down to 87 in the middle of November but recovered back to 100 at the end of the month to average 95. Declines in futures on the back of production cuts, falling steel demand and over supply of iron ore. Sentiment improved after positive news of China’s troubled property sector.  
  • Iron ore prices had been trending higher since late 2018 with improving steel mill margins as Chinese supply side reforms kicked in combined with strong demand. A high of 233 on 12th May in stark contrast with 100.50 on 30th Nov with over 50% annualised price volatility.
  • Coking Coal notably losing 22% during November from 403 to 316 averaging 368. At the start of November, China’s NDRC said coal prices remain much higher than mines’ cost levels and final winter pollution controls would require mill production curbs.                                                      
  • Flat rolled was again weaker in all 3 regions. HRC China (-13% MoM), Europe (-1% MoM), USA (-5% MoM). All showed a steady decline and European auto sector demand remained weak ~ 30% less steel due to semiconductor supply shortage impacting car production. This is not expected to improve until mid 2022.                                                                                                                          
  • Turkey Scrap lost 2% value during the month but was +3% MoM in what is seasonally a period of price gain as supply is constricted by lower collection rates. Limited supply did prevent any significant fall in price. With the forward curve heavily backwardated, there is buying interest in the market further along the curve.                                                                                                                     
  • Turkey rebar tracked scrap losing 2% in the month and also +3% MoM and the Rebar-Scrap spread coming in to average 233. Turkey Central Bank announcement to cut interest rates by 1% to 15% kept demand for rebar week.