Date: Sep 18, 2018

European ferro-vanadium and vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) prices climbed higher in the week ended Friday September 14 to reach more than 13-year highs amid supply concerns, while Chinese exporters held back offers to compensate for limited stocks.

  • Chinese export prices underpinned by strong domestic market
  • European FeV prices rise 5.5% week on week on supply concerns
  • European V2O5 prices edge up despite thin trading
  • US FeV market quiet, prices lag global market

China’s ferro-vanadium export price climbed last week against the backdrop of a strong domestic market and resumed buying interest from Europe following the traditional summer break.

Metal Bulletin’s price quotation for fob China ferro-vanadium min 78% rose to $85-88 per kg on September 13, up 6.8% from $80-82 per kg a week earlier.

“European buyers are coming back from holiday, and we have received more inquiries for the past one week,” a trader said.

At the same time, producers in China have been holding back from making offers in the export market due to limited availability of material stemming from tightened raw materials supply and strong domestic demand.

“We don’t have enough cargoes to sell as we don’t have enough raw materials to produce,” a producer told Metal Bulletin.

The Chinese government banned imports of vanadium scrap at the end of last year, which has tightened availability of the raw materials used in vanadium production.

“There are no stocks at all and the supply deficit is widening,” a second trader said.

Spot ferro-vanadium quotations in China’s domestic market climbed to as high as 290,000 yuan ($42,233) per tonne last week, compared with 280,000 yuan per tonne a week earlier, market sources told Metal Bulletin.

“Even domestic consumers couldn’t get enough units, let alone overseas buyers,” the producer said.

Metal Bulletin’s price quotation for fob China V2O5 edged up to $19-20 per Ib on September 13, from $18.50-19 per lb on September 6.

European FeV market strengthens further on persisting tight supply

In Europe, ferro-vanadium prices soared last week amid tight supply and a continued uptick in spot market interest.

Spot prices for ferro-vanadium rose to $93-96 per kg, delivered duty-paid in Europe, on September 14, according to Metal Bulletin’s latest assessment. This marked a 5.5% increase from $87-92.10 per kg during the midweek assessment.

European ferro-vanadium prices moved up quickly throughout last week, with prices now up 11.4% from $84.50-85.20 per kg on September 7.

Current price levels represent a more than 13-year peak for European ferro-vanadium, with prices now at their highest point since $93-98 per kg on June 13, 2005.

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