SHANGHAI, Mar 18 (SMM) – SMM expects operating rate across prebaked anode producers to decline further in March as weak prices in the market will prevent some plants from recovering after the heating season.
Downstream consumption remained poor as of the middle of March. Primary aluminium plants continued to cut capacity in February, despite at slower rates. Cash flow issues and aluminium smelters’ demand for high-quality products will also affect operation at prebaked anode producers in March.
SMM data showed that operating rates across China’s prebaked anode producers averaged 57.97% in February, down 0.99 percentage point from January.
A falling market and production curbs during the political sessions lowered operating rates across those producers in February, but the decline rate slowed from January as environmental impact eased, an SMM survey found.
CNY factors minimally affected the rates as most prebaked anode producers maintained regular operation during CNY.
Operating rates across medium-sized plants stood at 61.17% in February, down 1.17 percentage points on the month, and rates at small producers averaged 32.36%, down 5.39 percentage points. Large producers operated at a rate of 59.6% last month, flat from January.