COKING COAL DAILY: Seaborne prices flat; Australian premium price unlikely to pass $160/t short term

Seaborne coking coal prices in both the fob and cfr markets kept relatively flat on Friday January 29, with no deals heard during the day although sources do not believe the seaborne premium hard coking coal fob price will exceed $160 per tonne in the short term.

Fastmarkets indices
Premium hard coking coal, fob DBCT: $154.92 per tonne, down $0.18 per tonne
Premium hard coking coal, cfr Jingtang: $217.73 per tonne, unchanged
Hard coking coal, fob DBCT: $129.73 per tonne, unchanged
Hard coking coal, cfr Jingtang: $203.03 per tonne, unchanged

No transactions were heard today, sources told Fastmarkets on Friday.

After transactions of premium hard coking coal in the fob market were done at ever-increasing prices between Monday and Thursday this week, there were no deals on Wednesday and Friday, sources said.

“I don’t think the jumps in the premium hard coking coal fob price are sustainable. The number of transactions is small and some buyers aren’t in the spot market. I heard some steel mills in South America had to buy from Australia because there weren’t any US or Canada-origin coking coal spot cargoes. Those were directed to China instead,” a steel mill source based in East Asia said.

The steel mill source predicted the Australian premium hard coking coal price will not exceed $160 per tonne fob Australia as long as there are no new factors emerging, such as supply disruptions in the coking coal hub of Queensland, Australia due to cyclones.

A coke producer source from India said that steel mills there bought premium hard coking coal at around $154 per tonne fob Australia recently.

“But the premium hard coking coal price will be no more than $160 per tonne fob Australia short term,” the coke producer source said.

In the cfr market, no transactions of seaborne premium hard coking coal were heard done after Monday January 25.

When it comes to the Chinese domestic coke price, a trader source from China said that most steel mills had stocked up on coke for the Spring Festival, also recognized as the Chinese New Year, holiday (February 11-17).

“But there is likely to be another round of price increases before the Spring Festival,” he added.

Dalian Commodity Exchange
The most-traded May coking coal futures contract closed at 1,510 yuan ($233.48) per tonne on Friday, down by 55.50 yuan per tonne.

The most-traded May coke contract closed at 2,554 yuan per tonne, down by 51 yuan per tonne.

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