HomeGAA in the MediaNewsBulk alloy prices hold firm; trade case has little impact

 

AMM
March 2, 2015
Page 7
By Daniel Fitzgerald

Bulk alloy prices hold firm; trade case has little impact

NEW YORK - Bulk alloy spot prices remain largely stable against a background of stagnant spot trading activity, with some silicomanganese market participants seeing little short-term impact from Felman Production LLC's trade action against Australian imports.

High-carbon ferrochrome was unchanged in a range of $1.09 to $1.11 per pound, while ferrosilicon held steady in a range of 92 to 94 cents per pound.

Market participants continued to report declining contract offtake and spot inquiries, which have been widely attributed to plummeting steel prices, production curtailments and growing imports (amm.com, Feb. 13).

"Some stainless mills are still doing well, but in general business has quieted," one supplier said.

One ferrochrome supplier said that freezing rivers are limiting deliveries into the Pittsburgh and Chicago areas but doesn't expect the issue to have an effect on spot demand unless the condition continues for several more weeks.

Meanwhile, some silicomanganese suppliers told AMM that they don't anticipate Felman's anti-dumping case to have a meaningful impact on spot pricing anytime soon. AMA’s price assessment for silicomanganese held firm in a range of 54 to 55 cents per pound.

"The U.S. is already at a premium to the rest of the world, so I don't think you'll see anything until the end of the year, maybe. There's been no spot activity recently to even see spot prices go down," one supplier said. "It will have an impact only (when) the ITC (U.S. International Trade Commission) takes up the investigation. At some point you have to stop imports because you can't take the risk."

"If we were in a different market from where we are today, there would have been a far different reaction. But U.S. market pricing is already considerably above pricing in other areas, largely due to currency factors," a second supplier said.

The New Haven, W.Va.-based subsidiary of Miami-based Georgian American Alloys Inc. filed the petition in response to what it called "large and increasing volumes of low-priced imports of silicomanganese" from Australia's only producer, Tasmanian Electro Metallurgical Co. (amm.com, Feb. 19).

U.S. imports of Australian silicomanganese totaled 70,773 tonnes in 2014, representing 15.9 percent of the 444,323 tonnes shipped to the United States that year, according to data from the U.S. Commerce Department and ITC.

Australian silicomanganese deliveries to the United States in 2012 totaled 26,384 tonnes, representing 7.8 percent of the 337,895 tonnes imported that year. In 2013, Australian silicomanganese accounted for 22.9-percent of imports.