Iron and Steel

Iron ore price rebounds on renewed hopes of China stimulus

Iron ore price rebounds on renewed hopes of China stimulus
Iron ore futures prices recouped losses on Thursday, after falling for five straight sessions, helped by the latest support for the property market and renewed hopes of monetary easing in top consumer China.

The benchmark February iron ore on the Singapore Exchange climbed nearly 1% to $134.1 a metric ton, as of 0700 GMT, erasing earlier losses. It hit a nearly four-week low at $131.5 earlier in the session.

The most-traded May iron ore contract on China’s Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE) closed daytime trade flat at 976.5 yuan ($136.42) a ton, after hitting a three-week trough at 952.5 yuan earlier in the session.

China’s central bank has approved a 100 billion yuan loan, allowing companies in its eight pilot cities to use the loans to buy commercial residential properties that will be used for long-term rental, Economic Observer reported on Thursday.

Iron ore prices fell earlier in the session on lacklustre pre-holiday restocking by steelmakers.

“Sentiment soured after hot metal output so far in January failed to pick up as expected,” said a China-based trader, requesting anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to media.

The scheduled output of steel reinforcing bars (rebar) among mills surveyed fell 6.5% on the month to 9.67 million tons in January with losses among mills ranging from 100 yuan to 200 yuan a ton, data from consultancy Shanghai Metals Market (SMM) showed.

“Some mills have recently set up plans for a temporary reduction in production while a few others postponed the resumption of blast furnaces that had been under maintenance since December to stem the loss,” SMM added.

Other steelmaking ingredients on the DCE also recorded gains, with coking coal and coke climbing 2.07% and 0.97%, respectively.

Steel benchmarks on the Shanghai Futures Exchange broadly ticked up. Rebar added 0.21%, hot-rolled coil rose 0.4%, stainless steel gained 2.45% while wire rod lost 0.65%.

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