16 November 2022 – European alloy surcharges for December 2022 are currently hitting a raging nickel, expensive scrap, predictable ferro-chrome values and jumping ferro-molybdenum prices, battling it out with the strengthening euro for the strongest influence. But what does the political agenda of EU stainless steel producers have to say about all this?
Stainless steel alloy surcharges for December still on the rise?
As things stand, the rally in nickel should have an impact on the price development of alloy surcharges for European stainless steel producers. But the much stronger euro compared to the dollar should also have an impact.
Nickel price over 24% higher than end of October
The nickel price has rallied significantly since the end of October. It has risen by more than 24% and this does not even include the results of 15 November.
Chrome without significant impact
The benchmark prices for ferrochrome are fixed in the alloy surcharges and therefore only have an impact in the calculation every few months. Therefore, a further decrease in the chrome surcharges is not to be expected. This should support the price, especially for grades with high chrome content.
Scrap and stainless steel scrap
Scrap prices have risen again in the last few days and are up to approx. 3% above the prices at the end of October. Stainless steel scrap had recently become more expensive due to scarce availability and rising demand. In particular, price increases of around $ 200 per tonne were reported from Italy.
Ferro-molybdenum and the 316
The high ferro-molybdenum price had caused a significant increase in the corresponding alloy surcharges in October. After a brief dip at the beginning of November, at least the Asian ferro-molybdenum price has catapulted with a big jump above the prices of late October. So little movement should be expected from this side as well.
Energy costs down
Since energy costs are not included in the alloy surcharges, the lower energy costs have no effect on the surcharges. In October, the EU producer Aperam caused astonishment when it raised its energy surcharge again by 30%, although energy costs had already fallen drastically.
But is the alloy surcharge for December going up now?
Conclusion: Nickel and scrap point to an increase, the strong euro presses against it. In the debate about political and economic aid with regard to energy costs, ETS certificates and the CBAM and scrap export ban, a falling alloy surcharge should not really fit into the schedule of the European stainless steel producers at the moment.
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