SHANGHAI, Apr. 28 (SMM) –
Apparent consumption of refined copper during March was 829,200 mt, up slightly by 17,100 mt MoM, and supplied mainly from domestic refined copper output. According to an SMM survey, operating rates at downstream enterprises increased slightly in March, so refined copper was not likely completely digested. In addition, imported copper was unable to flow into domestic markets due to the unfavorable SHFE/LME copper price ratio, adding considerable pressure to bonded warehouse stocks. Copper inventory pressures remain high, so refined copper imports and output will not likely continue to grow while re-export demand is rising. In this context, SMM believes apparent consumption of refined copper during April will decline.
Apparent consumption of copper semis during March was around 1.06 million mt, up 124,200 mt from February. Increases in both copper semis output and imports led to a significant increase in March's apparent consumption, but not necessarily an increase in actual copper semis orders. According to an SMM survey, copper semis producers faced some finished goods inventory pressure during March, so apparent consumption of copper semis is not expected to increase during April.