Date: Jun 8, 2018

The European ferro-vanadium market surged earlier this week, amid a flurry of spot purchasing interest and renewed supply concerns.

Spot prices for European ferro-vanadiumincreased to $69-71.20 per kg on June 6, delivered duty-paid in Europe, up 4.82% from $66.25-67.50 per kg on June 1, according to Metal Bulletin’s mid-week assessment.

Spot market buying interest picked up considerably this week following last week’s price rebound, with both traders and consumers scrambling to restock material before any further price run-up.

Prices have continued to climb with each passing day, with many participants refusing to offer below the current Metal Bulletin high mark, market participants said.

“I sold at $69 at the start of the week to test the market, and all of the sudden I got flooded by inquiries. Everyone trying to get back in before it goes up even further,” a supplier source told Metal Bulletin.

“They might be too late because, at this point, I’m not offering under $72,” he added.

While a surge in spot inquiries has played a minor role in the rapid ascent of ferro-vanadium prices, unexpected tight supply has served as the primary factor for the price run.

“European stocks are at a very low level right now, so available material is hard to come by,” a second supplier source said.

“A lot of traders were liquidating on the downturn, and now most of them are all dried up on inventory,” a third supplier source agreed.

Since traders have run their inventories low, replacement material has been hard to come by due to considerably reduced availability of Chinese material.

“The offers from China have basically all dried up, so nothing is really coming from there. Without that, traders can’t replace material, so the market is suddenly looking very tight,” the third supplier source said.

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