SHANGHAI, Mar. 8 (SMM) -- A recent SMM survey of 18 major domestic cable and wire producers (total capacity: 666 kt/yr) revealed the following insights:
1) Significant Increases in Operating Rates
According to the SMM survey, the average operating rate at the cable and wire producers was 76.2% in March, up 7.6% from January, and up 13.1% YoY. A peak consumption period begins after the Chinese New Year holiday, with significant improvements in operating rates reported, especially in larger cable and wire producers, which were up 14.2% from January levels. Operating rates at medium-size producers remained stable.
2) Declines in Raw Material Inventories
The SMM survey shows raw material inventories in March were 23.7% of consumption, down 8.2% from January levels. Most cable and wire producers say they only purchased a limited amount of raw materials after the holiday due to higher prices, preferring instead to consume existing stocks. Copper rod is the main raw material of cable and wire producers, so demand for refined copper should slow as a result.
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