Global lead short-term outlook April 2023
Lead markets have generally consolidated during April after the wider market turmoil associated with the banking sector in March. News from the global manufacturing sector has been mixed, with strength in Europe focused on renewable energy, while Asia's strong point is telecommunications infrastructure. Stolberg's restart has not led to obvious weakness, and nor should it. Raw material availability is the key driver and recent mining news has confirmed that this is not recovering decisively. LME prices are therefore holding up, the arbitrage has widened further, and Chinese refined exports could arguably be viewed as something the ROW market is now relying on. Of course, this could quickly change if Chinese smelters opt to curtail their concentrate imports rather than continue accepting low spot TCs.