Forecasts and market analysis based on price assessments from Fastmarkets MB and Fastmarkets AMM

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January 2019 | Stainless Steels

Chrome markets stable but nervous: Chrome/Molybdenum Highlights

The European molybdenum oxide market has fallen to a six-month low and with underlying consumption in the stainless steel sector weaker than expected, we expect further weakness in the near term.

After some sharp price falls for chrome products last year (beginning mid-2018 in Chinese markets and then from early Q4 2018 for European and US markets), the last couple of months have seen prices remain relatively stable. Is there simply no room left for them to fall further?

Certainly prices are now closer to long-term averages than they were a few month ago (in real terms, once adjusted for inflation) but that is not to say that they could not head yet further down.

By our calculations, the long-term real price of spot market high-carbon ferrochrome in Europe sits at around $1/lb chrome contained (at 2018 price levels). Meanwhile, the long-term average price of high-carbon ferrochrome on the Chinese spot market is just under $0.80/lb chrome contained (again, at 2018 price levels). With respective prices for these products currently...


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