As of September 8, the SMM Imported Copper Concentrate Index (Weekly) stood at $93.34/mt, $0.77/mt higher than a week earlier. The spot trading was lukewarm during the week. Most market participants will attend an industry meeting in Kunming this week, where they will discuss spot business and spot copper concentrate procurement guidance TCs. The price coefficient of Cu 20% domestic ore stood at 88.5-89.5%.
SMM understood that, a deal of 10,000 mt of spot clean ore occurred between a trader and a smelter with TCs in the mid-to-high $90s, scheduled for October/November. The cargoes may be supplied by the Robinson copper mine. According to a market participant, one smelter purchased 10,000 mt of standard clean ore with TCs of $95/mt, scheduled for shipment in October/November. A mining company said that many smelters in north-west and central China required mines to ship copper concentrate in advance. Traded TCs of standard seaborne clean ore scheduled for shipment in November between mines and smelters remained in the high $80s, while those of standard seaborne clean ore scheduled for shipment in November between mines and traders rose to $85/mt.
We learned that a Brazilian mine was reselling 50,000-70,000 mt of copper concentrate scheduled for shipment in November/December, helping spot TCs continue to rise. Overall, the current TCs offered by sellers for clean ore to be shipped in October/November are in the mid-to-low $90s, while the inquiries from smelters are declining. The inquiries for clean ore scheduled in the fourth quarter of this year stand at $95/mt.
SMM believes that Chinese smelters will restock raw material inventories ahead of the negotiations on next year’s benchmark TC for long-term contracts in a bid to obtain more negotiation power over pricing. Copper concentrate inventories across seven major ports in China stood at 937,000 mt on September 8, up 22,000 mt from a week earlier.