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WBMS Press Release October 2015
21/10/2015

January to Aug 2015 METALS BALANCES


Primary aluminium market records deficit in January to August 2015

The calculated market deficit for primary aluminium for January to August 2015 was 257 kt which follows a deficit of 654 kt recorded for the whole of 2014. Demand for primary aluminium for January to August 2015 was 37.28 million tonnes 2295 kt more than the first eight months of 2014. Production in January to August 2015 rose by 2557 kt compared with 2014. Producer stock data is no longer published and total reported stocks fell by 164 kt during August and at the end of the month were 4280 kt which equated to 29 days demand and compares with 5020 kt at the end of 2014. Total stocks held in the four exchanges in London, Shanghai, USA and Tokyo were 3621 kt at the end of August 2015 which was 825 kt below the December 2014 total. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes especially those held in China.

Overall, global production rose in January to August 2015 rose by 7.2 per cent compared with the first eight months of 2014. Chinese output was estimated at 21056 kt and this currently accounts for 55 per cent of the world production total. Chinese apparent demand was 14 per cent higher than 2014. Chinese net exports were 237 kt in January to August and net exports for the whole of 2014 were 313 kt. Net exports of aluminium semi manufactures from China have soared from 1838 in January to August 2014 to 2558 in the first eight months of 2015.

Production in the EU28 fell by 1.7 per cent and NAFTA output fell by 2.8 per cent. EU28 demand was 226 kt lower than the comparable 2014 total. Global demand rose by 6.4 per cent during January to August compared with the levels recorded one year previously.

In August 2015, primary aluminium production was 4854.7 kt and consumption was 4759.1 kt.

Copper market records surplus in January to August 2015

The copper market recorded a surplus of 134 kt in January to August 2015 which follows a surplus of 298 kt in the whole of 2014. Reported stocks fell during both June and July but rose slightly in August to close 96 kt higher than at the end of December 2014 No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes, particularly in the Chinese government stockpile

World mine production in January to August 2015 was 12.6 million tonnes which was 3.1 per cent higher than in the same period in 2014. Global refined production rose to 15.1 million tonnes up 1.4 per cent compared with the previous year with a significant increase recorded in China (up 98 kt) and India (up 37 kt).

Global consumption for January to August 2015 was 14971 kt compared with 14920 kt for the same months of 2014. Chinese apparent consumption in January to August 2015 fell by 15 kt to 7172 kt which represented 48 per cent of global demand. EU28 production fell by 0.5 per cent and demand was, at 2215 kt, 1.3 per cent above the January to August 2014 total.

In August 2015, refined copper production was 1939.7 kt and consumption was 1879.3 kt.

Lead market records small surplus in January to August 2015

The lead market was in surplus by 52 kt in January to August 2015 which follows a deficit of 2.4 kt recorded in the whole of 2014. Total stocks at the end of August were 86.4 kt lower than at the end of 2014. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes.

World refined production during January to August 2015 from both primary and secondary sources was 6612 kt which was 6.5 per cent lower than in the comparable months of 2014. Global demand was 532 kt lower. Apparent consumption in China totalled 2550 kt of lead in January to August 2015 which was 362 kt below the comparable period in 2014 and represented over 39 per cent of the global total. For the USA, apparent demand has decreased by 95 kt.

In August 2015, refined lead production was 808.6 kt and consumption was 791.2 kt.




Zinc market records surplus in January to August 2015

The zinc market was in surplus by 123 kt during January to August 2015 which compares with a deficit of 209 kt recorded in the whole of the previous year. Reported stocks fell by 58 kt during the eight month period. LME stocks rose by 92 kt in August and ended the month 166 kt lower than at the end of 2014. LME stocks represent 46 per cent of the global total. Chinese demand rose by 0.5 per cent compared with the previous year. Production of locally refined metal in China rose by 11.2 per cent compared with 2014. Chinese imports of mostly special high grade metal were 33.7 kt in August which brought the year to date figure to 265.6 kt, 214 kt lower than January to August 2014.

Global refined production rose by 6.0 per cent and consumption rose by 1.3 per cent compared with the levels recorded one year earlier. Japanese demand was, at 325.6 kt, 2.3 per cent below the equivalent total for January to August 2014.

World demand was 114 kt higher than the January to August 2014. Chinese apparent demand was 4215 kt which is just under 46 per cent of the global total. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes.

In August 2015 slab zinc production was 1178.4 and consumption 1203.3 kt.

Nickel market records small deficit in January to August 2015

The Nickel market was in deficit during January to August 2015 with apparent demand exceeding production by 18 kt. In the whole of 2014 the calculated surplus was 241.8 kt. Reported stocks held in the LME at the end of August were 39 kt higher than at the end of the previous year. Refined production in January to August totalled 1262 kt and demand was 1280 kt.

Mine production during January to August was 1247 kt, 96 kt below the comparable 2014 total. The Indonesian export ban and the assumed drastic decline in local mine production began at the beginning of 2014. Japanese smelter/refinery output increased by 5.1 kt compared with 2014 and apparent demand was 2.5 kt lower than in the previous year.

World apparent demand was 128 kt higher than the previous year. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes

In August 2015, nickel smelter/refinery production was 171.5 kt and consumption was 168.9 kt.


Tin market records deficit in January to August 2015

The tin market recorded a deficit of 9.6 kt during January to August 2015 and there were no DLA deliveries during the period. Total reported stocks fell slightly during August and ended the period 2.5 kt lower than December 2014.

Global reported production of refined metal (excluding re-processed LME metal) was down by 14.4 kt, compared with January to August 2014. Production in Asia declined from 203.3 kt in January to August 2014 to 191.4 kt in the comparable period in 2015. Apparent demand in China was 7.8 per cent lower than the equivalent period of the previous year.

Global tin demand during January to August 2014 was 241.0 kt which was 7.1 per cent below the comparable period of 2014. Japanese consumption was 17.7 kt which was 1.1 kt below the comparable total for 2014.

In August 2015, refined production was 29.8 kt and demand was 29.7 kt


Dated 21st October 2015
- ENDS-


The above data are taken from World Metal Statistics October 2015 published today.

Editors requiring more detailed information should contact Sue Eales by email at suee@world-bureau.co.uk or by telephone +44 (0) 1920 461274




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Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and validity of the information contained in this release WBMS and its Board of Directors can accept no responsibility for any losses incurred as a direct result of any actions based on conclusions drawn from the data.

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