SHANGHAI, Apr 18 (SMM) – As the China-US trade war worsened, stock prices of Chinese minor metal producers dropped for the most part on Wednesday April 18 at Shanghai and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges, SMM learned. This marked a fifth day's dip in a row, and prices approached record two-month lows, with the biggest drop at 2.6% this morning.
Last week, prices of antimony ingots started to decline as sellers sought to destock. This followed US President Trump's tariff dispute with China. Transactions of antimony ingost weakened further as downstream plants worried about a smaller export share of antimony trioxide.
Traded prices of cathode material products were flat from last week as the slower-than-expected downstream consumption weighed on prices upstream. SMM sees downward room in prices of lithium salt in the second quarter of the year as newly arrived lithium salt products in the market will undergo quality improvements.
Due to the volatility of major commodity, indium spot sellers were keen to destock amid pessimistic sentiment in the market, leading to lower indium prices. SMM assessed spot prices of refined indium at 2,000-2,080 yuan/kg as of Friday April 13, down 60 yuan/kg from two weeks ago.
In overseas markets, however, refined indium orders remained firm with relative optimistic buyers. Offered prices were heard at $345-370/kg, up $12.5/kg from two weeks ago.
SMM expects prices of indium to fluctuate in a narrow range if consumption remains stable. With tighter supply, crude indium saw its prices higher than refined indium. Crude indium traded at 1,950-2,000 yuan/kg last week. As prices of refined indium dipped to 2,000 yuan/kg last week, traders adopted a watch-and-wait stance, with only small volumes of inventory on hand.
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