March Aluminum Update

  • 6 Apr 2018
  • By CME Group
  • Topics: Metals

Aluminum Updates

  • Open interest across all CME aluminum products reached all-time high of 72,354 contracts on 29 March.
  • Aluminum MidWest U.S. Transaction Premium Platts Futures has become increasingly volatile in March. April contract traded in a wide range of 0.1525 and 0.1750 $/lb. The average daily volume in Q1 this year reached 644 contracts (~16K mt).
  • Aluminum Premium Japan (MJP) had the record month as 4,395 lots traded while open interest reached all-time high of 10,542 contracts.
  • The long-dated volume continued to increase across all aluminium premium futures as open interest in European Duty-Paid premium hit the record high of 11,345 as of end of March.
  • For the second consecutive month, the ongoing tariff rollout stemming from Washington has been the center of attention for the aluminum market.  Following President Trumps imposed 10% duty on aluminum imports, the tariff measures were diluted as various countries demanded and obtained exemptions for their exports.  Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, the EU, India, Mexico and South Korea have won temporary reprieve from US tariffs pending further negotiations.
  • The IAI reported last month that global primary aluminum output, excluding China, fell to 2.009 million tons in February from a revised 2.21 million tons in January, however, Reuters anticipates that approximately 4.4 million tons of new Chinese capacity is expected to be produced this year despite the Chinese government’s attempt to restrict aluminum output in an effort to curb pollution. [Source: World Aluminium , Reuters]
  • Alumina prices rallied in March after Hydro’s Alunorte declared force majeure. Alumina FOB Australian (Platts) Apr18 Futures soared from $375 to $430 per mt (+15%) since end of February. [Source: Metal Bulletin]

Aluminum Premium Futures Price Performance:

  • Regional Aluminum premium futures are driven by the different fundamental factors, thus, creating arbitrage opportunities.

Aluminum Premium Futures Month-on-Month Change in Forward Curve and Open Interest


Monthly Aluminum premium volumes


Aluminum Inventory Movements

Date Total Inventory Eligible Registered
31/03/2017 31,837
22,711 9,126
28/02/2018
65,287 65,236 51
29/03/2018
55,266 55,215 51
MoM Change, % -15% -15% 0%
YoY Change, % 74% 143% -99%

Source: CME. Data as of 29 March 2018


Disaggregated Commitment of Traders Report


Alumina Futures


If you have any questions or would like more information regarding this weekly communication, please contact metals@cmegroup.com.

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