SHANGHAI, Mar. 13 (SMM) – According to the latest SMM survey, 81% of major Chinese copper wire rod producers are upbeat about their March orders.
SMM expects that the average operating rate at these surveyed producers will be 70.15% in March.
Around 81% of copper wire rod producers hold the view that their orders will increase in March. In their views, copper wire rod orders were low in February due to the Chinese New Year holiday factor, but will increase during March as downstream producers resumed production gradually, and as construction projects accelerated after the weather improves. Market insiders await the government's policy on investment from the NPC and CPPCC meetings, so real high peak demand period will likely arrive in April.
The remaining 19% of producers anticipate that copper wire rod orders during March will hold flat with February levels. Post-holiday copper prices experienced considerable drops and attracted some downstream producers who did not replenish stocks before the holiday to step up raw material purchases. Nevertheless, from recent situations, copper wire rod orders are not optimistic during March. Furthermore, although copper prices fell appreciably, scrap copper prices held firm in the face of tight market supply. This meant that scrap copper enjoyed no price advantage against refined copper, which propelled copper rod producers to scale back output. Hence, these copper wire rod producers predict March orders will remain virtually unchanged from the previous month.