SHANGHAI, July 22 (SMM) - The prices of some specifications of metallurgical-grade silicon metal rose slightly, while others remained stable as a whole.
As of July 22, the prices of 553# silicon without oxygen stood at 16,700-16,900 yuan/mt in east China, up 300 yuan/mt or 2% on the week; 553# silicon with oxygen 17,700-17,800/mt, up 100 yuan/mt or 1% on the week; 441# silicon 18,100-18,300 yuan/mt, flat from last week; 3303# silicon prices were 18,500-18,600 yuan/mt, flat from last week.
Due to the high temperature, the power supply in Sichuan was slightly tight. Some silicon factories in Leshan city and other places reduced the production due to the power rationing. However, the production reduction in Sichuan had little impact on the overall supply amid the current high operating rates across the country. Cargo holders quoted relatively firm this week, but most downstream companies focused on digesting their inventories. In this case, the market transactions were mainly retail orders. Among them, the inquiries of grinding plants were more active. The market of chemical-grade 421# silicon was less active than metallurgical-grade silicon metal due to the decline in the operating rates of silicone and the weak demand.
On the demand side, the operating rates of silicone were not high due to the maintenance. The shipment of silicone monomer was not smooth either and the prices of DMC fell to 19,800 yuan/mt on July 22, while stood between 20,500- 21,300 yuan/mt most of the time. Due to the weak downstream demand, DMC prices are unlikely to rise in the short term and are expected to fall. The transactions of 421# silicon were mainly in the form of retail orders before the centralised procurement begins. The operating rates of polysilicon changed little as the enterprises were still under maintenance. Some grinding plants restocked as they did not purchase enough silicon metals in the early stage. The operating rates of aluminium alloy remained low due to the traditional off-season in July and August. In addition, the profitability of aluminium alloy companies was weak amid the poor downstream consumption. Therefore, they were less willing to accept the high-priced silicon metals.
Inquiries in the silicon metal market are poor, although the overall silicon metal prices stabilise, some silicon factories lower their quotations as they are more willing to sell. However, the downstream is bearish about the silicon prices and holds a wait-and-see outlook. The transactions are in stalemate amid the upstream and downstream wrestling. The prices of some specifications of silicon metal may fall under the condition of poor shipments.