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Iron Ore

Australia's Iron Ore Miners Hang Tough as Prices Fall

By James Regan, Reuters If Australian miners are worried about the dramatic decline in iron ore prices, it doesn't show. At an annual gathering of many of the world's biggest and smallest iron ore producers here the mood is upbeat - as if the heftiest one-day fall in ore prices since the global financial crisis never happened. "Iron ore mining isn't tennis, it's a contact sport," said David Flanagan, chairman of Atlas Iron Ltd. "Sometimes it hurts a bit, like you copped it in the stomach. We just get on with it." Iron ore for immediate delivery to China slumped 8 percent on Monday after data showed China's trade balance swung into deficit, amplifying concerns about a slowdown in the world's No. 2 economy and the biggest importer of the steel-making ingredient. Iron ore is down 22 percent so far this year to $104.70 a tonne, triggering comparisons with a slump in 2012 to below $90 that shuttered many mines and left producers rethinking expansion plans. Australia is expected to ship more than half a billion tonnes of iron ore to China in 2013. Like most Australian producers, Atlas is still in the black, putting its total costs of getting iron ore into China at A$70 to A$75 a tonne ($63 to $68 a tonne). "I'm just not fussed over what's gone on in the market this week," said Wayne Richards, executive chairman of Tawana Resources, which is digging an iron ore mine in Liberia.


China's Qingdao Port Probing Iron Ore Financing Fraud

China's Qingdao port said on Wednesday it is investigating whether iron ore warehouse receipts were fraudulently used multiple times to raise finance from different banks, Xinhua news agency reported. The probe is focussed on one trader with iron ore receipts, the Chinese news agency said. It follows a broad investigation earlier this year by Chinese authorities into the use of iron ore as collateral in financing deals.


Vale Profit Falls Amidst Record Output

Brazilian miner Vale SA posted a sharp decline in profit from the previous quarter as lower iron ore prices undermined record production of the steel-making ingredient. Vale, the world's largest producer of iron ore, reported second-quarter net income of $1.43 billion, down 43 percent on the previous quarter and below the average analyst estimate of $1.89 billion in a Reuters survey. "It was a very challenging environment where the price of our most important product has dropped by


JFE’s Ship Unit Targets Orders for Five Vessels

JFE Holdings Inc.’s shipbuilding unit is reportedly aiming to win orders for as many as five iron ore carriers, according to a report on www.businessweek.com. Iron-ore carriers including Nippon Yusen K.K. and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd. are expanding dry-bulk fleets to tap demand for the steelmaking material. Exports of the ore from Australia, the world’s largest shipper, are forecast to rise at an average annual rate of 7 percent to 2015


Iron-Ore Ship Rates Rise as China Spends

Iron-Ore carrier daily rates rebound as China spends US$158-billion. Iron-ore ships are poised to earn more than operating costs for the first time this year as rates rally on speculation Chinese steel mills will accelerate imports because of a 1 trillion-yuan ($158 billion) building program, reports Bloomberg Business News. Capesizes, each carrying 160,000 metric tons of ore, will earn $12,500 a day in the fourth quarter


China's Demand Slows, BDI Index Unlikely to Jump

According to a London report issued Aug. 14, dry bulk freight rate index climbed by 2.5% on Friday at Baltic Mercantile and Shipping Exchange, a moderate rise for two consecutive days. Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) indicated in its report that China's bulk commodity import will slow down, and that China's bulk material import is predicted to drop from record high and slacken afterwards, according to Financial Times, Aug. 17.


Baltic Freight Index up on Higher Dry Bulk Activity

Reuters - The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Monday. The overall index, which factors in the average daily earnings of capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize dry bulk transport vessels, rose 19 points to 1,562. The Baltic's capesize index rose 43 points or 1.4 percent to 3,023 points. Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal


BHP Iron Ore Mines Resume Operation

Reuters reported that BHP Billiton’s Australian iron ore mines have recommenced work at full operation following a cyclone that battered coastal regions and closed major shipping terminals this week. “Port Hedland, the world's biggest iron ore terminal and used by BHP to export nearly 200 million metric tons of the steel-making material annually, sustained only minor damage from Cyclone Christine and reopened late on Tuesday,” Reuters said.


SKorean Shipbuilders Lower on Steel Price Concerns

Shares of shipbuilders and automakers were lower in late morning trading as investors react belatedly to the possible increase in steel prices, reports indicated Hyundai Heavy Industries was down 4,500 won or 1.2 percent at 380,000 won, Samsung Heavy Industries was off 600 won or 1.9 percent to 30,400 won and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering fell 300 won or 0.8 percent to 39,300 won. Hyundai Motor was down 1,300 won or 1.9 percent at 67,600 won and Kia Motors down 50 won or 0


Largest New Shipping Order

China's largest private shipbuilder has signed this year’s biggest deal in terms of dead weight tons, according to the company. Jiangsu Rongsheng Heavy Industries Group signed a contract Friday with Oman Shipping to build four iron ore carriers, each with a dead weight of 400,000 tons. The deal is the second largest for the company after a contract for 12 iron ore carriers was inked with Brazilian mining giant Vale last August


Great Lakes Dry Cargo Residue Discharge Rule in Effect

The U.S. Coast Guard published a final rule to the Federal Register announcing that it has received approval from the Office of Management and Budget for an information collection request associated with the January 2014 final rule on the discharge of bulk dry cargo residue on the U.S


Vale, Cosco to Cooperate on Iron Ore Shipping

Brazilian miner Vale SA reached a deal with China Ocean Shipping Co (Cosco) for transporting iron ore, a move that could help the Brazilian miner resolve a costly two-year ban on docking its mega-ships at Chinese ports. Vale said in a statement that it would transfer ownership of four very


Great Lakes Ore Trade in High Gear in August

For the second month in a row, shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes reached their highest level in six years. The 7,242,492 tons loaded in August are the most since July 2008 when 7,318,961 tons moved from U.S. and Canadian ports. The August ore float also represents a slight increase over


Another Strong Month for US Lakes Fleet

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 11 million tons of cargo in August, their second-highest monthly total in two years. The August float, while down 3.2 percent from July, also represents an increase of 5 percent compared to a year ago.


Grounded Freighter Refloated in Straits of Mackinac

The American Spirit, a 1004-foot freighter that had been hard aground in the Straits of Mackinac since Thursday afternoon, was refloated early Friday morning. The vessel is making way to St. Ignace, Michigan, where it will anchor. Coast Guard marine inspectors and American Bureau Shipping


Big Laker Aground in Straits of Mackinaw

American Spirit: Photo courtesy of ASC

The US Coast Guard informs it is responding to the 1004-foot freighter 'American Spirit' after it ran aground in the Straits of Mackinac (which connect Lake Michigan and Lake Huron) reporting as follows: At 6:30 p.m., Thursday, a search-and-rescue controller at Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste


St. Lawrence Seaway Cargos up 3% over 2013

CSL Assiniboine loading iron ore at the CN/Duluth dock. Photo by Diane Hilden/courtesy Duluth Seaway Port Authority

Total cargo shipments on the St. Lawrence Seaway have surpassed 2013 levels despite one of the most difficult starts to the shipping season in years due to ice coverage. According to Seaway figures, total cargo tonnage from March 25 to August 31 reached 20 million metric tons


Capesize Rates to Rise Much Higher this Year

According to Commodore Research & Consultancy, capesize rates ended last week at $15,561/day, which marked a week-on-week increase of $6,167 (66%). Capesize rates have been able to rise by such a large amount so quickly, as vessel availability in both the Atlantic basin and Pacific basin have


BIMCO: Bulk Market Awaits Freight Rates Lift

Photo courtesy of BIMCO

Dry Bulk Shipping: All eyes on Brazilian iron ore exports, as we await the long-anticipated lift in freight rates. Demand The freight market, which performed so well in Q1, has certainly not delivered in the past four months. BDI has dropped from 1,621 on March 20 to hit 747 on July 29


Great Lakes’ Ore Float at 6-year High

Photo: LCA

Iron ore shipments on the Great Lakes totaled 7,231,506 tons in July, the highest level since July 2008 when 7,318,961 tons were loaded at U.S. and Canadian ports. This July’s total also represents an increase of 8.6 percent over June and 10.2 percent over a year ago.


Brazil Iron Ore Terminal will Start This Year

Trading firm Trafigura and Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala said on Thursday their Brazilian port for exporting iron ore will start this year, in response to a steelmaker with a contract to use the port that said the opening could be pushed back to 2015.


July is Best Month for US-flag Lakers in 2 Years

lca logo.jpg

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 11,365,550 tons of cargo in July, their highest monthly total in two years.  The industry’s July total also represented increases of 8.6 percent compared to June and 10.2 percent compared to a year ago.


Vale Plans to Double Iron Ore Exports to China

Photo: Vale

Brazilian mining company Vale SA plans to double its iron ore exports to China within five years, Jose Carlos Martins, the company's head of ferrous metals, told reporters on Thursday. Rio de Janeiro-based Vale is the largest producer and exporter of iron ore


Glencore Courts Guinea's Iron Ore Treasures

Miner and commodity trader Glencore has expressed interest in iron deposits in Guinea, a presentation obtained by Reuters shows, although the company said it had not pitched for a stake in Simandou, the country's largest deposit. Glencore is the latest mining major looking to invest in iron ore


Japan PM Tells Brazil Time to do More Business

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe touted the success of his economic policies on a visit to Brazil on Friday and said it was time for the two nations to expand their trade and investment partnership. On the first visit to Brazil in a decade by a Japanese prime minister






 
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