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Asia alumina: Drifts at $271.50/mt FOB but down $2/mt on week

Platts Australian alumina daily assessment at $271.50/mt FOB was unchanged from Friday, but was down $2/mt on the week and $18.50/mt lower month on month.

The market has been pressured by unplaced tonnes, slack demand and weak smelting margins. China’s well supplied and weak domestic alumina market also weighed on the Australian market.

In the last couple of weeks, importers and consumers have been prominently seeking to resell term contract cargoes from Australia.

In recent days, bid-ask levels were seen at $269-$273/mt FOB Australia and $280-$285/mt CIF China.

Market participants have said buyers were generally hard to come by, due to credit and cash flow difficulties in China.

Concerns about the nation’s macro-economy also meant buyers remained on the sidelines.

There was no shortage of domestic material in China, and participants have said domestic supply had the appeal of being available in smaller lots.

Platts China alumina daily assessment for Henan province at Yuan 2,290/mt ($360) ex-works for 70:30 cash and credit payment terms was unchanged from Friday but down Yuan 10/mt on the week and Yuan 50/mt on the month.

The Shanxi market was at Yuan 2,250-2,270/mt in cash.

Source: Platts

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