SHANGHAI, July 19 (SMM) - As of last Friday, the prices of 553# silicon without oxygen stood at 16,400-16,600 yuan/mt in east China, up 300 yuan/mt or 2% on the week; 553# silicon with oxygen 17,600-17,700/mt, up 500 yuan/mt or 3% on the week; 441# silicon 18,100-18,300 yuan/mt, up 400 yuan/mt or 2% on the week; and 3303# silicon 18,500-18,600 yuan/mt, up 100 yuan/mt or 1% on the week.
The prices of metallurgical-grade low-grade silicon rose significantly. The demand of grinding plants and aluminium alloy companies was released, but supply of the low-grade 4 and 5 series silicon was tight. In addition, the silicon factories were unwilling to sell and held back cargoes while awaiting future price hikes. Therefore, the prices of metallurgical-grade low-grade silicon rose more significantly and prices of high-grade silicon and chemical-grade 421# silicon rose synchronously. The transactions were relatively poor last week, but the prices continued to rose. In this scenario, enterprises mainly purchased as needed.
On the demand side, as most polysilicon enterprises had maintenance plans in July, the upward trend of polysilicon prices extended. In terms of silicone, as the downstream enterprises mainly digested their in-plant inventory, the transactions of DMC were poor and the prices fell slightly by 400 yuan/mt to 20,400-21,000 yuan/mt. The increase in orders received by aluminium alloy companies was limited amid the traditional off-season of automotive industry. Therefore, the die-casing enterprises held a negative attitude towards the market and the transactions were poor. In addition, as the aluminium prices declined, the prices of aluminium alloy ingots fell sharply. SMM ADC12 aluminium alloy prices fell by 900 yuan/mt on the week to 17,700 yuan/mt. A356 aluminium alloy prices stood at 18,550 yuan/mt, down 1,000 yuan/mt on the week.
Except for the tight supply of some specifications caused by the mismatch between supply and demand, the overall market supply is sufficient. Market players hold diverged views on the follow-up silicon prices. Some cargo holders are bullish because they expect that the output will be affected by the high temperature and power rationing in Sichuan and Yunan, hence believe that the silicon prices may further increase as the silicon factories are unwilling to sell. Some cargo holders hold a bearish outlook because they believe that the demand is weak and the silicon metal prices are unlikely to rise amid the decline of commodity prices. They expect that the silicon prices will remain stable this week as the transactions contract amid the negotiations between buyers and sellers.