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

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March 2019 | Base Metals


Nickel: Remaining bullish


Supported by steady LME stock outflows, nickel prices remain robust and may be completing a second ‘higher-low’ in the uptrend off the early-January bottom. The technical indicators should confirm this in the coming days. On the fundamentals, we have raised our Q1 Chinese production forecast, which, all other things being equal, has reduced the global annual deficit for 2019 by 21,000 tonnes to 63,000 tonnes.

Latest EV indicators from China only bullish Although Chinese auto data has remained very weak so far this year, with passenger vehicle sales down 14.1% in January-February, the latest data from Fastmarkets’ Battery Raw Materials Market Tracker, shows that sales of new-energy vehicles (NEVs) continue to soar. They totaled 53,000 units in February, up 53.6% year on year, while 59,000 NEVs were produced (+50.9%). Sales of battery-only electric vehicles (BEV) rose 69.4% to 40,000 and plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) rose 18.6% to 13,000. The slower up-take of PHEVs implies the government subsidy changes last year are encouraging people...

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