Thursday, September 24, 2009

Whither Coal?

Future demand for coal and iron ore will be very significant for the Australian economy.
What will happen to Chinese demand over the next few months, the next year?
My suspicion is that the rebuild in inventories and stockpiling will lead to a sustained decline in demand if final demand from the US and Europe does not pick up.
Nevertheless there is still considerable scope for the Chinese to build infrastructure.

See Back In The Black by Kishori Krishnan 23 September 2009
In China though, no one expected the financial crisis to be the end of Chinese steel demand, and the Chinese government, as well as many private producers, have used the low international commodities prices as an opportunity to restock after years of high costs.

"Many domestic producers have arbitraged the low offshore prices [with higher onshore prices]," says Ben Simpfendorfer, head China economist at Royal Bank of Scotland. "This has made demand look stronger than it was in China," he added, warning that he expects a correction in the next one or two months, both due to the end of restocking, and to the regular slowdown in commodities demand that comes every summer.

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