SHANGHAI, Jan 9 (SMM) - Price review: As of last Friday, the SMM weighted alumina index stood at 2,929 yuan/mt, up 2 yuan/mt from a week ago. The prices stood between 2,860-2,960 yuan/mt in Shandong, 2,930-3,000 yuan/mt in Henan (+5 yuan/mt), 2,940-2,990 yuan/mt in Shanxi, 2,820-2,900 yuan/mt in Guangxi (+10 yuan/mt), 2,810-2,880 yuan/mt in Guizhou (+5 yuan/mt), and 2,880-2,980 yuan/mt in Bayuquan.
Overseas market: The quotations were unchanged from a week ago at $330/mt FOB Western Australia last Friday, equivalent to 2,875.55 yuan/mt CIF major ports in China, which was 53.45 yuan/mt lower than the domestic spot prices.
Domestic market: The trading activities remained subdued last week. With more people recovering from Covid, the labour shortages will gradually improve. Freight costs rose due to falling logistics capacity with the Chinese New Year drawing near. For example, bauxite freight rate in Shanxi rose 5-10 yuan/mt. Bauxite was still in short supply. In this context, alumina refineries in north China were discouraged from resuming or ramping up their production. Roughly 1.2 million mt of alumina capacity in Guizhou was curtailed in December due to power rationing, equivalent to a monthly output loss of nearly 110,000 mt. This slightly drove up alumina prices in south-west China last week.
Aluminium smelters have basically completed their winter stockpiling, resulting in muted trading activities in the spot market. Alumina prices are expected to be largely stable before the Chinese New Year.