SHANGHAI, Oct. 15 (SMM) – Ignition lead-acid battery sales began recovering since late August with the onset of peak demand season, prompting leaders in the segment, such as Camel Group and Fengfan, to raise prices. In this context, analysts from Shanghai Metals Market (SMM) would like share their views on lead-acid battery demand and price trends for Q4 2013 and 2014 at the China Metal Summit to be held in Shanghai November 18-19.
Many ignition battery producers raised prices by 3-5% in September given improving consumption, while distributors also increased purchases on optimistic outlook.
Camel Group took the lead to increase unit price for battery by 3% on August 20, SMM has learnt, with unit price for 6-QW-45AH battery up from 209 yuan to 215 yuan, and that for 6-QW-60AH battery up from 305 yuan to 314 yuan.
The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers reported that China’s auto output and sales through the first nine months increased 12.78% and 12.70% YoY, respectively, to 15.94 million and 15.88 million vehicles, with total amounts for the whole year expected to break through 20 million. The boom in automobile sector buoyed ignition battery demand, and in turn prompted leading ignition battery companies, including Fengfan, Jujiang, and Chuanxi, to elevate battery prices in September.
That being said, battery consumption in high demand season this year lagged behind the past few years, and battery producers could not be overoptimistic to battery prices in Q4.
Most ignition battery producers report stable production at present, but tend to control finished goods inventories, learning the lesson from last year when a supply glut in peak demand season resulted in a price cuts early this year. Camel Group and Fengfan is now keeping operating rates high.
In addition to the analysis of lead-acid battery demand and price trends, SMM will also release its exclusive forecast for lead prices 2014 at the China Metal Summit sponsored by China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association Secondary Metal Branch and Shanghai Nonferrous Metals Industry Association.