For the Quarter Ending June 2023
The decline in demand from the downstream construction sector has been responsible for the bearish market sentiments for Fluorspar in the domestic market of Mexico in Q2. The inquiries from the downstream Anahydrous Hydroflouric Acid remained average and didn't lead to a significant development in Fluorspar prices this month. As per EIA, After nearly two decades of steady declines, Mexico's petroleum and liquid fuels production has remained stable. In view of environmental protection and to avoid unregulated mining activities, the government has planned to reform its guidelines for manufacturing entities. Furthermore, Grupo Mexico, a conglomerate involved in mining and transportation, saw revenue slip 1.1% in the mining division in Q1 on a yearly basis. Towards Q2-end, The inquiries from the downstream construction sector didn't improve much. As a result, foreseeing the dip in demand, the manufacturers opted for price cuts to encourage new shipments. The offtakes from the downstream Anhydrous Hydrofluoric Acid were also in dire strait, contributing to the downshift observed in the price realizations of Fluorspar. In addition, the weak performance of the US construction sector has further imposed downside risks on the price realizations of Flurospar, as the majority of fluorspar shipments have been accounted for in the US market. Ob the other handa downward trend spurred by a long cycle of rate hikes has resulted in Mexico's annual inflation decelerating in June to 5.06%.
The prices of Fluorspar have demonstrated mixed market sentiments in the domestic market of China. In the first half of Q2, the prices of Fluorspar has increased. The reopening of the Chinese market has provided fresh momentum to the Asian markets, and as a result, the procurement from the overseas market has escalated. Although, the downstream demand from the construction sector did not contribute much to the market growth of Fluorspar. Furthermore, on the upstream front, the declining costs of input energy materials have prompted the production cost to witness a downtrend. According to statistics released by the China Coal Industry Association, the nation's raw coal output reached 1.15 billion tonnes in the first quarter of this year, up 5.5% from the same period last year, sustaining an increase and fostering the production of various chemicals, including Fluorspar. However, towards late Q2, The operating rate of manufacturing firms was under pressure for the sustenance of market balance as the demand from the downstream construction sector remained subdued. Moreover, In terms of cargo, market sentiments have remained pessimistic, with rates and volumes remaining low on significant trade routes in June.
Throughout the second quarter of 2023, the prices of Flurosapr have witnessed volatile market growth in the domestic market of South Africa. The power woes faced by the South African economy have impacted all sectors, from mining to manufacturing, curtailing the profit margins of the manufacturing firms. Load restrictions enforced on the power grid by Eskom's operator and Transnet's efficiency as the nation's railway and port operator were two signs of a reduction in production. In addition, Due to the failure of three mid-sized US banks and Zurich-based Credit Suisse, banks in important advanced economies have scaled back on lending amid persistent financial turmoil, further slowing down the economic activity with South Africa's main trading partners. Overall, the domestic demand from the steel industries has remained adequate, strengthening the market fundamentals of Fluorspar among the manufacturers. Although, the demand for Anhydrous Hydrofluoric Acid has remained average, as reported by market participants. On the other hand, the inquiries from the European Nations were moderate, as the persistent inflationary pressure has impacted their purchasing power. Consequently, Fluorspar Ex-Durban prices were settled at USD 425 per ton in Q2-end.
For the Quarter Ending March 2023
Limited demand from the downstream construction sector has impacted the market fundamentals of Fluorspar in Mexico in the first quarter of 2023. In early Q1, a slight improvement was observed as The tight monetary conditions and the volatility in energy materials costs have pressured the manufacturing activities in the domestic region. The market transactions were average and did not contribute to the upshift observed in Fluorspar costs. However, the prices have started to drop amid sluggish inquiries from the downstream markets. The downstream market players have already replenished their stocks in mid-Q1, which crippled the offtakes in March. Foressing the elevated stocks, manufacturers have reduced their offers. The ChemAnalyst database has shown that Fluorspar Ex-Mexico City prices were settled at USD 410 per ton at Q1-end.
In the domestic region of China, the price trends of Fluorspar have remained volatile. Following the lifting of the COVID restriction, manufacturing activities were boosted, and as a result, the prices remained at the upper levels in early Q1. The inflows of new orders from the downstream construction have been improved, reported by market participants. After the spring festival holidays, the Flurospar market was sluggish, and The build-up of inventories has pushed manufacturers to reduce their offers to encourage new sales in mid-Q1. Furthermore, toward the end of the first quarter, the accumulation of inventories and rigid demand from the downstream construction sector weakened the market growth of Fluorspar. The costs of transportation of a 20ft container from China to the USA, Saudi Arabia, and the Netherlands were also fallen to a low level. Thus, Fluorspar Ex Shanghai prices were settled at USD 435 per ton in March.
The prices of Fluorspar have demonstrated mixed market sentiments in South Africa. At the start of the first quarter, the inquiries from the downstream construction sector inched higher and led to an increment in the market value of Fluorspar. Adequate inventories were available to cater to the downstream demand. As per market participants, there was an active movement of goods as no supply-chain constraints were observed. However, load shedding has continued to weigh on the production activities of Fluorspar throughout Q1. Furthermore, the prices dropped in March as The inquiries from the Western markets were also sluggish as the continued inflationary pressures and tight monetary conditions have curtailed the trade activities of Fluorspar. Consequently, Fluorspar Ex-Durban prices were concluded at USD 425 per ton at the end of the first quarter.
The prices of Fluorspar increased at a slower pace in the US market in Q4. The intensified inflationary pressures have impacted the price realizations of Fluorspar among the manufacturers, and production costs have been impacted. Domestic inquiries from the refrigerant sector were average and primarily based on need-on-demand. Although there was a decrement in Natural Gas costs, it was high enough to curtail the profit margins of manufacturing firms. In November, the demand from the downstream industries improved, and overall sales stabilized. As per the data, the Purchasing Manager Index was observed to be above 50 points in the Mexican market. Towards the end of the fourth quarter, the manufacturing activities have also expanded. Prices of Fluorspar Ex-Mexico City were observed to be hovering around USD 435 per MT in December.
In the fourth quarter of 2022, Fluorspar prices have remained on the uptrend. In the first half of Q1 of 2022, the supply of Fluorspar was relatively limited, according to market participants. The logistics and transportation in China's domestic market have been impacted by the stringent COVID-19 regulations. However, the inflows of new orders from the downstream Hydrofluoric Acid and refrigerant market were sufficient to cause a rise in manufacturer's quotations. Furthermore, the market value of Fluorspar escalated in November, as some mining enterprises have also stopped mining amid the winter seasons. Towards the end of Q4, the downstream market stabilized, and Fluorspar Ex Shanghai prices were settled at USD 450 per MT.
In South Africa, the prices of Fluorspar have demonstrated mixed sentiments in the fourth quarter of 2022. The market participants have reported that the domestic demand from the refrigerant industry was sufficient. However, sluggish inquiries from overseas markets, along with raging inflation and volatile economic situations, have weighed on Fluorspar's market sentiments among manufacturers. The inventory conditions were optimum in the domestic region, and the pressure on the supply side of Fluorspar has eased. In December, demand from the downstream steel and refrigerant market remained on the lower end. The downstream purchases were not sufficient to support the market rise of Fluorspar. The ChemAnalyst database has shown that Fluorspar Ex-Durban averaged USD 420 per MT at Q4-end.