SHANGHAI, Mar. 18 (SMM) – In Shanghai, SMM #1 nickel prices were between RMB 95,300-96,300/mt, with market sentiment improving. But transactions made among traders were muted due to firm prices, with traded prices of RMB 95,400-96,400/mt, and prices for end-users were RMB 95,600-96,600/mt.
SMM surveyed 36 market players and found that 28% believe LME nickel prices will continue to rise this week, moving between USD 15,950-16,150/mt. Indonesian ban on the export of unprocessed ore will continue to boost nickel prices, despite increases will slow.
55% believe LME nickel prices will hover between USD 15,700-15,900/mt. Due to ongoing Ukraine crisis and before the FOMC policy meeting, investors will remain cautious.
The remaining 17% think LME nickel prices look set to fall further to USD 15,500-15,700/mt. US major economic data to be released are optimistic as the weather improves, so the FOMC meeting may decide to continue scaling back QE3, which will push up the US dollar index to rebound in the latter half of the week and dragging down nickel prices.