News that Northern Chinese regions plan to extend blast furnace utilisation restrictions had the peculiar effect of boosting iron ore prices this month. This might seem counter-intuitive – lower pig iron production equals lower demand for iron ore. But in a tight steel market, restricting supply means higher steel prices and margins – and this flows through to raw materials. But the effect of the policy will end in late March/early April. We should then see Chinese steel prices ease and that will ultimately flow through to iron ore.