This month the zinc price hit $2363/t, an 18 month high. Short selling subsequently undermined the price, however, the retreat proved short-lived and it recovered most of its lost ground. Further evidence of the tightness in the concentrate market emerged this month with spot treatment charges falling from $105/t to $90/t their lowest level since April 2012. Furthermore, some Chinese smelters are believed to be buying in the range $80-90/t. The fall in treatment charges has been accompanied by an increased number of Chinese smelters seeking to purchase spot material and reports that smelters in the south of the country are depleting their stocks of concentrate and those in the north are not able to build stocks ahead of seasonal supply disruptions caused by winter.