GLOBAL VANADIUM WRAP: Vanadium Markets in China, Europe Continue to Weaken Amid Summer Lull

The European and Chinese vanadium markets weakened again in the week to Friday June 28 because of subdued summer demand and low spot liquidity.

  • China export ferro-vanadium price nudges down amid weakness in domestic, European markets
  • European ferro-vanadium continues to fall amid limited spot activity
  • European, Chinese V2O5 prices mostly unchanged; spot activity remains scarce
  • US market flat amid inactivity

Export prices for ferro-vanadium in China nudged down this past week in response to signs of weakness both in the domestic and the European markets

Fastmarkets’ assessment of the export price for ferro-vanadium, min 78%, fob China, widened downward to $34.50-37 per kg on June 27, down from $35-37 per kg a week earlier.

The Chinese export market for ferro-vanadium was lackluster last week with few deals reportedly concluded within the pricing period as of June 27. “This is because the Chinese ferro-vanadium price has still been higher than its European counterpart and overseas demand has subsided with summer coming,” a market source in China said.

“We barely receive any inquiries from abroad this week, neither did we make any offers,” a Chinese ferro-vanadium exporter said on June 27. 

Meanwhile, the sluggish demand from Chinese domestic mills and traders in the past week also undermined sentiment in the country’s export market, promoting some ferro-vanadium exporters to lower either their offer prices or expectations of tradeable prices. 

“The domestic demand [for ferro-vanadium] is not good either. The number of inquiries is far less than expected,” a second Chinese ferro-vanadium exporter said on June 27.

“This is definitely not a good sign especially when domestic [ferro-vanadium] suppliers’ nerves have been fragile. This will likely cause a panic selling among suppliers, traders in particular, for fear of further price falls, which will in turn weigh on the market sentiment further,” the exporter added.

The stringent production restrictions among steelmakers in northern China’s Tangshan city in place since late June dampened local mills’ buying interest for raw materials including vanadium products to some extent, market participants said. Tangshan city is one of the major steelmaking production hubs in China.

Similarly, China’s export price for vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) edged down tracking the trend in the domestic market.

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