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European SMO254 Prices are on Bullish Note Amidst Higher Feedstock Cost
European SMO254 Prices are on Bullish Note Amidst Higher Feedstock Cost

European SMO254 Prices are on Bullish Note Amidst Higher Feedstock Cost

  • 24-Feb-2023 3:25 PM
  • Journalist: Peter Schmidt

In the week ending February 24, SMO254 prices skyrocketed in the European market due to current market uncertainty in raw material Molybdenum costs. According to market participants, current market volatility in global Molybdenum has resulted in record highs in SMO254 prices, with both acute and fundamental variables pushing costs above market participants' expectations. After the interim price rise in the raw material Nickel eased, SMO254 market participants are now dealing with another supply-related shock: extreme fluctuation across the global Molybdenum complex. The supply of Molybdenum is problematic, and the downstream industrial gas turbines and superalloys, particularly SMO254, are in reasonable demand.

According to our sources, European prices for Molybdenum ingots have reached new highs this month, with prices in Rotterdam's warehouse reaching USD 95-105/kg. A shortage of upstream Molybdenum Oxide has exacerbated the rise in Molybdenum. According to major players, the SMO254 market has allegedly been hit by a storm in the face of raw material shortage. Strong market demand from the energy sector has boosted inquiries for alloyed products such as SMO254, Hastelloy, and Inconel, while supply has been disrupted. Some SMO254 traders are taking a "wait and see" approach owing to uncertainty and extremely high costs. Insurance and financing are becoming more challenging to obtain, and lending conditions are also sensitive to changes in interest rates.

Amid the raw material shortage this earnings season, major manufacturers have been eager to tout SMO254 prices. The southern market is looking for ways to lift Molybdenum production, which is supported by global supply shortages and strong demand in China, the United States, and Europe. Additionally, the shipping delays keep jeopardizing some routes, thwarting plans to avoid issues by making reservations and inciting last-minute spot purchases. Major players claim that they purchased SMO254 last year but are now at a loss because it has not arrived, and they need to replace the order.

As a ripple effect, ChemAnalyst anticipates that the SMO254 prices will remain stable in the upcoming months as end-users are not showing much rigidity despite record-high Molybdenum prices. Some players have been buffered from these spot fluctuations for a short period thanks to long-term contracts with fixed prices. Furthermore, there is a strong consensus that raw material prices will fall in the coming months, further easing SMO254 prices.

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