Metal industry news from your expert local metal stockists.
The remarkable and fast-changing world of metals delivers a constant stream of fascinating news. Here’s some of the best from recent weeks.
Aluminium industry news that will affect metal stockists and buyers – Russian aluminium losses.
As expert aluminium extrusion suppliers we like to keep a finger on the aluminium industry pulse. The latest? The huge Russian aluminium firm Rusal has announced that the dramatic drop in the price of the metal in 2015 has knocked its profits for six. At the same time it’s optimistic about 2016, predicting a hike in demand this year. Rusal expects 5.7% hike in global aluminium demand through this year, thanks to growing demand in the USA, EU and Asia. And they expect Chinese growth to remain strong.
In late 2015 the aluminium price fell to a six year low, with 300,000 tons of spare supply dramatically exceeding demand, in part thanks to a surge in Chinese aluminium production. The EU’s Chamber of Commerce is concerned about China’s metals overcapacity in general, which it says could lead to “far reaching” damage to the world’s economy.
Where there’s muck there’s… brass industry news!
The city of Jamnagar, on the west coast of India in the state of Gujarat, is home to a dramatic expansion in the local brass industry. The parts-based sector, which only experienced nominal rates of growth until recently, is taking off fast in a turnaround that’s taking locals by surprise.
Until recently exports accounted for less than 10% of the brass industry’s total turnover, most of which was sold in Africa. Now they’re seeing a flurry of orders from the USA, Asia and Europe, and the export rate has rocketed to at least 20%.
The reason? It appears that real estate and electronics have led to the increase in demand for brass parts in the EU, which are cheaper in India than they are locally, sometimes as much as 30% less, simply because labour costs are so much higher in the EU. While the Indian domestic market for brass products is on the wane, foreign exports are outweighing the drop.
If you’re looking for expert British brass sheet suppliers, walk this way…
Stainless steel price crisis affects recycling
As steel suppliers in the UK we’ve been watching the world steel price rise for the last couple of months. They plummeted to their lowest level for over ten years at the end of 2015, thanks to record-breaking Chinese exports and a resulting steel supply glut. Now the steel price slow-down seems to have stopped, although so far experts say it’s supply-driven rather than a solid trend.
At the same time it looks like steel supply and demand in China are dropping, and Chinese steel suppliers are predicted to cut the price of experts further as domestic consumption remains weak. Some steel stockists and manufacturers are expected to offer the metal at low margins, even below the cost price, in an effort to get orders. Obviously the situation isn’t sustainable for more than the short term, after which facilities might be forced to scale down or close altogether.
Recycling rates for the essential autocatalyst metals, platinum and palladium, have also suffered as a result. With steel prices forecast to suffer through 2016 by many, the platinum group catalyst recovery rate is predicted to fall, with more cars stockpiled by recyclers until the steel price rises.
Of course we are only metal stockists. If you are interested to keep up with metal industry news from the professionals you can check out AMM for a US perspective on the global market.
More metal industry news from your metal stockists next time
Come back next time for more news and views from the UK metal supply experts, Metalex.
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