IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: 5 key stories from February 7

Here are five Fastmarkets MB stories you might have missed on Friday February 7 that are worth another look.

Prices in Southeast Asia’s steel billet market have tumbled last week amid speculation that Chinese billet importers could annul contracts on the grounds of virus-related force majeure.

China has halved tariffs on a slew of US-sourced metals and minerals including copper cathodes and rare earths.

Nickel and cobalt producer Ramu NiCo, owned by state-owned Metallurgical Corporation of China, has been sued for $5.4 billion for environmental failures, the latest in a long line of environmental woes to befall the Papua New Guinea operation.

Zinc’s benchmark cash/three-month spread on the London Metal Exchange has moved into contango for the first time in five months after the largest inflow since last April brought on-warrant material to more than 50,000 tonnes.

The coronavirus outbreak in China has severely disrupted logistics in the country, creating a shortage of available truck drivers and rail freight cars, with transport between provinces severely disrupted.

What to read next
Read more from senior analyst Andy Farida on how the price action in LME nickel has played out in the first half of 2024
Tight aluminium scrap availability, the increase in container costs, sluggish demand in the US and the US market’s current indifference to rising premiums in Europe and Asia were the top subjects discussed during the Harbor Aluminum Summit that took place in Chicago on June 4-6
Germany-based copper recycling and non-ferrous metal provider Aurubis has started commissioning their secondary smelter in Augusta, Georgia, and could eventually introduce black mass recycling to the facility
Base metals on the London Metal Exchange were mixed in morning trading on Monday June 10, with three-month prices lacking direction amid thin traded volumes due a public holiday in China, the largest market for base metals
Copper concentrate treatment and refining charges have repeatedly fallen to record-low levels over the first five months of 2024
The publication of Fastmarkets’ assessments for the nickel briquette premium, delivered Midwest US and the nickel 4x4 cathode premium, delivered Midwest US for June 4 were delayed because of incorrect methodology application.