Merafe has advised its shareholders that the European benchmark ferrochrome price for the third quarter of 2020 has been settled at 114 US cents per pound, a rollover from the second quarter of 2020.
Prior to the announcement, Fastmarkets’ assessment of the price for ferro-chrome, high carbon, 6-8.5% C, basis 60-70% Cr, max 1.5% Si, delivered Europe widened to $0.82-1.05 per lb Cr on June 26.
This was due to weak demand weighing on Europe’s ferro-chrome markets.
The European markets for both high- and low-carbon ferro-chrome, delivered, softened in the week ended Friday June 26 in response to weak consumption.
Both consumers and producers of ferro-chrome said that they would be reducing their outputs by more than usual during the summer slowdown in 2020, in response to the low economic activity.
The European charge and high carbon ferro-chrome benchmark was only $1.01 per lb in the first quarter 2020. It has jumped by 13 cents, or 12.9%, to $1.14 per lb for the second quarter of 2020.
The settlement is announced every quarter by Merafe Resources, which operates a chrome joint venture with trader-miner Glencore in South Africa.
The benchmark is settled via negotiations between a leading South African ferro-chrome producer and a major European stainless steel mill; usually Glencore and Luxembourg-based mill Aperam. The benchmark is a forward-looking price for the coming quarter.
The European charge and high carbon ferro-chrome benchmark for the third quarter of 2020 was $1.14 per lb, unchanged quarter on quarter. It has dropped 2 cents to $1.02 per lb for the fourth quarter of 2019.