Commodity market report
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9 Pages

China coal short-term outlook January 2017: holiday slowdown

China coal short-term outlook January 2017: holiday slowdown

Report summary

There was limited downwards movement in the Chinese thermal coal market in January – despite the lack of fundamentals required to support prices at these levels. Thermal coal demand was surprisingly weak as a result of mild weather and smaller-than-expected production cuts during the holiday period had led to an oversupplied market. We have lowered our spot price forecast for end February to RMB560/t, down RMB37/t from the RMB597/t at end January for FOB QHD 5,500.
Chinese premium hard coking coal prices have stabilised over the past three months, signalling the price has peaked. However, the overall fundamentals for the next two months remain weak for metallurgical coal because of falling steel production. In addition, the significantly lower seaborne metallurgical prices will pressure domestic metallurgical coal prices as well. We forecast the FOR Liulin #4 hard coking coal price at end February to be RMB1,500-1,550/t, down RMB50-100/t, as demand slows and supply increases.

What's included?

This report includes 2 file(s)

  • China coal short-term outlook January 2017: holiday slowdown PDF - 394.39 KB 9 Pages, 1 Tables, 9 Figures
  • cms china short term market report data.xls XLS - 2.17 MB


Global coal markets are facing extraordinary challenges and uncertainties. Factors such as global overcapacity, weakening demand and falling prices have created cautious investors. These factors have caused delays and cancellations of many mine and infrastructure projects, as well as lower growth rates at others.

This Coal Market Short Term Outlook report gives global and regional coal producers, consumers, transporters and investors detailed supply, demand and price forecasts for the coal industry, covering all the key domestic markets in North America, China and India.

Use this report to gain a better understanding of market dynamics, including revenue and demand potential for different coals. It will also help you identify trade patterns and changes affecting the coal markets.

Wood Mackenzie is the only coal industry service provider that offers a market outlook integrated with other sector analyses, including macroeconomics, coal supply, steel markets and gas and power markets. Our coal analysts are based in the markets they analyse. They work with objective, proprietary data to help you maximise your current and future investments.

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  • Executive summary
    • Key market data
  • Prices
    • Thermal coal prices to fall quicker in February
      • Key thermal coal prices – history and forecast, US$/t nominal
      • Hard coking coal price arbitrage at Tangshan steel mill, US$/t nominal
  • Demand
    • Holidays drag on thermal coal demand
    • Metallurgical coal demand set to ease in Q1 2017
  • Supply
    • Chinese New Year production cut less severe than 2016
    • Coal imports likely to fall in 2017

In this report there are 10 tables or charts, including:

  • Executive summary
    • Executive summary: Table 1
  • Prices
    • Prices: Image 1
    • Prices: Image 2
  • Demand
    • Demand: Image 1
    • Monthly coal-fired generation, TWh
    • Monthly hydropower generation, TWh
    • Monthly throughput at Qinhuangdao, Mt
    • Monthly throughput at Huanghua, Mt
    • Monthly hot metal production, Mt
    • Monthly metallurgical coke production, Mt
  • Supply
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