Abstract: as novel coronavirus wreaked havoc in February, including downstream construction, logistics and other factors, aluminum exports are expected to decline to a certain extent in January and February.
According to the General Administration of Customs, China imported 36400 tons of aluminum in December and exported 440000 tons, up from 400000 tons the previous month, marking the second consecutive month of month-on-month recovery and net exports of 403600 tons in December. For the whole of 2019, China imported a total of 354600 tons of aluminum, down 10.7 percent from the same period last year, and exports of 5.15 million tons, down 1.6 percent from the same period last year. Net exports were 4.8 million tons, compared with 4.83 million tons in 2018.
From the perspective of the product structure of aluminum exports, according to the statistics of Shanghai Metal net, aluminum products involve a total of 32 customs codes, which can be divided into seven categories: aluminum powder, aluminum strip dry profile, aluminum wire, aluminum strip, aluminum foil, aluminum tube and pipe accessories. Among the aluminum exports in 2019, aluminum strip accounted for 50.77 percent, with a cumulative export of 2.61 million tons; aluminum foil exports of 1.3 million tons, accounting for 25.13 percent; aluminum bar and profile exports of 1.05 million tons, accounting for 20.31 percent; aluminum tubes accounted for 2.44 percent, with a cumulative export of 125600 tons; aluminum wire accounted for 0.68 percent, with a cumulative export of 35300 tons; pipe accessories accounted for 0.49 percent, with a cumulative export of 25400 tons; Aluminum powder accounts for 0.17%, with exports of 8857 tons.
On the whole, aluminum exports in 2019 decreased compared with the year before. On the one hand, trade frictions escalated in recent years, involving countries such as the United States, the European Union, Canada, Mexico, India, Argentina and other countries and regions. The products involved basically include all the major aluminum products. On the other hand, Hulun is at a higher level over the years, and the profits of aluminum export traders have shrunk obviously, and the situation of aluminum export during the year is more severe.
In the past year, aluminum prices as a whole showed a strong internal and external weak pattern. Last year, Hulun aluminum prices climbed all the way to the upper edge of the three-year range. As can be seen from the black trend line below, currently around 8, the overall price is still relatively high. This is followed by a significant narrowing of aluminum processing materials export profits, some low value-added aluminum exports turned into losses last year, high-end aluminum export profits are also nearly halved.
From a monthly point of view, aluminum exports recorded positive month-on-month growth in December last year, in which there was a part of pre-consumption, and the Shanghai-to-London ratio declined in November, with the spot ratio as low as 7.8, considering that the export of aluminum processing materials lagged by about a month. As a whole, there is a certain contribution to the December increment. Originally, we expected that due to the influence of the Spring Festival, aluminum exports would decline significantly in January from the previous month, and there would be a certain rebound in February, but at present, due to the rampant impact of novel coronavirus in February, including downstream construction, logistics and many other factors, aluminum exports are expected to decline to a certain extent in January and February.