Lead broke free from the base metals complex in mid September to score a six-year high price of $2519/t following an acute shortage of refined metal in China. The prevailing and ever-tightening concentrate shortage combined with a new wave of even tougher environmental inspections to severely curtail output. Continued robust consumption soon depleted SHFE stocks, so buyers were forced to turn their attention to acquiring importing refined metal. As SHFE prices shot higher a positive arbitrage to the LME developed to $90-100/t, opening the flood gates to refined lead imports. Chinese concentrate spot TCs dropped even further with the possibility of negative TCs appearing for deliveries in Q1 2018. Meanwhile, the full impact of up to one million vehicles destroyed by hurricanes Harvey and Irma is still being assessed for the US lead scrap and battery industries.