Commodity market report
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Global iron ore long-term outlook Q2 2017

Global iron ore long-term outlook Q2 2017

Report summary

  • Our annual average price forecast for 2018 is $50/t CFR ($48/t in real terms – previously $52/t). Prices need to fall to this level and remain there for up to two years to force out uncompetitive seaborne supply that is excess to requirements.
  • We think 2018 will mark the low point of the cycle for iron ore as stagnant demand coincides with plentiful supply of low cost seaborne material.
  • A more concentrated industry structure will emerge post-2020, coinciding with a return to growth in global hot metal production. Enhanced pricing power of the "majors" and positive "cost push" will lead to a gradual price recovery from 2020. 
  • Our base case view is for prices to gravitate towards our long term price forecast of $60/t CFR (real terms) by 2023/24.
  • The interaction between scrap and hot metal in the Chinese steel sector has emerged as a key risk factor for iron ore.

What's included?

This report includes 2 file(s)

  • Global iron ore long-term outlook Q2 2017.pdf PDF - 1018.55 KB
  • Iron ore LT Datafile Q2 2017 revised.xls XLS - 923.50 KB


As global demand weakens and commodity prices fall, we're seeing a challenging environment in the metals and mining industry. Mining companies are increasingly coming under pressure to reduce operating costs, causing many to shift their strategic planning, delay new investments and look to long-term future growth.

This Iron Ore Long Term Outlook report provides a detailed breakdown of global supply and demand balances in this market, as well as price forecasts.

Mining companies, investment banks and investors can use this report to understand the future direction of the ferrous and base metals market. It will also help you assess the impact of key industry issues and events on market balances and pricing.

From acquisitions to investments, Wood Mackenzie helps you plan, forecast and benchmark in the metals markets. Our proprietary database and analyst expertise combines robust production, consumption and pricing data with detailed analysis to identify market opportunities.

We give you a holistic view of the ferrous and base metals markets so you have the confidence to make strategic decisions.

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