Commodity market report
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13 Pages

Coal prices float on a turning tide: Global metallurgical coal short-term outlook November 2016

Coal prices float on a turning tide: Global metallurgical coal short-term outlook November 2016

Report summary

The surprise conclusion to the US election did little to affect metallurgical coal markets this month, but there was no escaping the impact of ongoing supply disruption. Prices broke the US$300/t price barrier early in the month and have remained above that level since. But as we approach the end of the year, the mine outages in Australia will be rectified, and the Chinese government looks set to exert its influence again, this time acting to temper recent price rises. Barring an unforeseen weather-related supply cut we expect prices to start to fall next month, and continue to do so, as international supply increases through 2017.  Q1 2017 hard coking coal contract prices will be high - we have revised up our forecast to US$278/t - but will decline through the remainder of 2017 and into 2018.

What's included?

This report includes 2 file(s)

  • Coal prices float on a turning tide: Global metallurgical coal short-term outlook November 2016 PDF - 373.65 KB 13 Pages, 1 Tables, 9 Figures
  • cms metallurgical trade short term outlook November.xls XLS - 2.00 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 Metallurgical 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 metallurgical 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.

From market dynamics to trade patterns, we give you confidence in your strategic planning.

  • Executive summary
    • Key market data
  • Prices
    • China moves to directly influence coking coal prices
    • Q1 2017 contract price will reflect the November price rises
    • ...but prices will trend down toward nadir in 2018
  • Supply
    • Outlook for Australian exports starting to improve after a bad couple of months
      • Queensland ports:metallurgical exports (Mt)
    • US production showing signs of life
    • Canadian miners looking to benefit from high prices
    • Market recovery gives emerging exporters a shot in the arm
    • Price spike increases asset values but puts existing agreements in jeopardy
  • Demand
    • NDRC relaxation has the potential to alter balance in 2017
    • China's stimulated steel demand set to slow during Winter
      • Chinese crude steel production rates by month 2012-2016
    • Coke import duties and demonetisation a positive for Indian coking coal imports
    • Trump victory adds uncertainty on uncertainty

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

  • Executive summary
    • Executive summary: Table 1
  • Prices
    • Key metallurgical coal prices: history and forecast (US$/t)
  • Supply
    • Supply: Image 1
    • US metallurgical coal exports Hampton Roads (Mt)
    • Mongolian monthly coking coal exports - 2011 to 2016
  • Demand
    • Demand: Image 1
    • Global & Chinese steel production (Mt)
    • Steel production - other major producers
    • Global & China blast furnace iron production (Mt)
    • blast furnace iron production - Other major producers
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