Iron ore: Supply and demand are tight and prices are strong, and future production restrictions will determine price trends.
Last week, despite the resurgence of the expectation of production restrictions, iron ore prices were still running steadily. And the open interest of the most-active iron ore contracts increased, while its trading volume decreased. The closing price reported 1,182.5 yuan/ton, down 2.5 yuan/ton on a week-on-week basis, or 0.21%. In terms of spot, Qingdao Port PB fines reported 1,500 yuan/ton last week, up 9 yuan/ton week-on-week, the discounted price was 1,660 yuan/ton, and the basis of the most-active contracts was 478. SSF reported 1,055 yuan / ton, up 8 yuan/ton on a week-on-week basis, with a discount of 1,317 yuan/ton, and the basis of the most-active contracts was 134. The Platts 62% index reported US$217.3/ton on the 4th, down US$0.35/ton. In terms of price performance, spot prices were stronger than futures prices. In terms of transactions, last week’s main iron ore port had an average daily transaction of 900,000 tons, a week-on-week decrease of 150,000 tons. Affected by the short-term suspension of production of blast furnace due to the party celebration in July 1st, the transaction was weak.
On the supply side, according to Mysteel's statistics, the total global shipping volume was 34.688 million tons, an increase of 4.82 million tons from the previous week. Among them, Australia and Brazil shipped 27.723 million tons of iron ore, a week-on-week increase of 3.541 million tons; Australia shipped 19.812 million tons, a week-on-week increase of 1.524 million tons; of which Australia shipped 15.603 million tons to China, a week-on-week increase of 805,000 tons. Brazil’s total shipments amounted to 7.911 million tons, an increase of 2.017 million tons from the previous week. Last week, the average daily output of iron ore concentrates of Chinese domestic 266 mines was 418,300 tons, a decrease of 20,300 tons from the previous week, and the capacity utilization rate was 66.3%, a decrease of 3.22% from the previous week. On the supply side, the overall shipping volume of overseas mines increased significantly, the utilization rate of domestic mines' capacity fell from a high level, and the overall supply increased slightly.
In terms of demand, Mysteel surveyed 247 steel mills with a blast furnace operating rate of 57.94%, a decrease of 21.74% week-on-week and a year-on-year decrease of 33.07%; the blast furnace ironmaking capacity utilization rate was 81.01%, a week-on-week decrease of 10.16%, and a year-on-year decrease of 12.35%; the profit rate of steel mills was 71.43%, a week-on-week drop of 3.03% and a year-on-year drop of 22.08%; the average daily molten iron output was 21.563 million tons, a week-on-week drop of 270,500 tons, and a year-on-year drop of 328,600 tons. Mysteel surveyed 163 steel mills with a blast furnace operating rate of 41.99%, a decrease of 18.92% week-on-week, the capacity utilization rate was 51.01%, a month-on-month decrease of 21.69%, the utilization rate excluding eliminated capacity was 55.53%, a decrease of 30.48% from the same period last year, and the profit rate of steel mills was 66.87 %, the same week-on-week. Affected by the July 1st party celebration last week, the demand side of iron ore fell sharply. In the follow-up, the possible impact on the demand side of iron ore should be measured according to the strength of the national production restriction policy.
In terms of inventory, Mysteel counted that the imported iron ore inventory of 45 ports across the country was 122.3486 million tons, an increase of 589,500 tons from the previous week; the average daily port congestion volume was 2.5828 million tons, a decrease of 367,000 tons from last week. Australian iron ore increased by 87.02 to 6,339.3, Brazilian iron ore increased by 22.2 to 3,470.1, the trade iron ore increased by 145.5 to 6,602.1, pellets decreased by 14.9 to 394.3, iron ore concentrates increased by 36.5 to 882.2, lump ore increased by 71.7 to 1,809.98, the coarse fines decreased by 34.3 to 9,148.4; and the number of ships in port was 143, a increase of 17 from last week. Iron ore inventories have turned from a low level, and the overall inventory has been at a low level over the same period. The contradiction in the variety structure is still more prominent.
On the whole, the domestic and international supply and demand of iron ore have been in a tight balance since the beginning of this year, supporting the strong operation of iron ore prices all the way. In May, the State Council investigated the high prices of bulk commodities, and the price of iron ore subsequently dropped, but now it has returned to and maintained at a relatively high point. After the July 1st party celebration, some steel mills resumed production one after another, which caused the demand for iron ore to pick up in the short term, and the price was on the strong side. However, at the same time, steel mills across the country were affected by the production restriction policy and lower profits, and began to have intensive maintenance and the introduction of production restriction plans for the second half of the year. Looking ahead, the national crude steel production limit for the whole year is expected to come back. Once the production restriction policy is implemented, the supply of scrap steel will decrease simultaneously, and the molten iron needs to make up for the missing part of the scrap, so that the price direction of iron ore will depend on the intensity of domestic production restrictions. If the intensity of production restriction is small, due to the current tight global supply and demand of iron ore, its price is likely to continue to run on the strong side. If the crude steel production restrictions are greater, iron ore stocks are expected to continue to accumulate. This will make the supply and demand pattern gradually turn into an oversupply, and the subsequent price of iron ore is expected to run weaker.
Unilateral: tend to be bullish in the short term; under pressure in the medium term
Spot-Futures Arbitrage: None
Concerns and risks:
1. The implementation of the policy of limiting production at the thread and hot-rolled coil end;
2. Domestic and overseas steel demand may weaken at the same time;
3. Iron ore shipments, etc.
Rubber: The downstream operating rate will rebound again, supporting future prices.
Last week, rubber futures prices fell again after a short-term rebound in the previous week, mainly due to the further weakening of the week-on-week demand. The increase in environmental protection requirements due to the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party has increased the maintenance of some tire factories, and the operating rate of tire factories has fallen to less than 50%.
The total inventory of domestic exchanges as of July 2 was 184,286 tons (+752), and the amount of futures warehouse receipts was 174,650 tons (-170). Recently, the price of rubber was still weak, and the non-standard spread was at a low to mid-to-low level, resulting in an insignificant increase in warehouse receipts. As of June 27, inventory in Qingdao Free Trade Zone continued to fall slightly, and the trend of destocking continued.
According to Zhuochuang's understanding, domestic spot prices have fallen. With the continuous digestion of raw materials from the tire factory in the early stage, it was heard that the enquiry sentiment had heated up during the last week, but the actual transaction had not been followed up, and the terminal still maintained just-needed procurement. The US dollar spot was adjusted in accordance with the domestic market, but due to the low downstream operating rate, the overall purchase and procurement were not active. In addition, most factories maintain low inventory levels, resulting in poor trading performance. U.S. dollar cargoes fluctuated with the market trend, but due to weak terminal demand and falling raw material prices, the overall trading sentiment in the U.S. dollar market was weak. As of last weekend, the price of the premium of synthetic rubber was -225 yuan/ton (-650). The recent continuous decline in rubber prices has brought about a reversal of the spread pattern.
In terms of downstream tire operating rate, as of July 1, the operating rate of all-steel tire companies was 45.28% (-18.85%), and the operating rate of semi-steel tire companies was 44.75 (-14.2%). The drop in operating rate last week was mainly related to the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party. Tighter environmental protection has led to overhauls in some factories, and it is expected that the operating rate will pick up next week.
Opinion: The price of Shanghai rubber fell again last week, and the main pressure came from the periodical weakening of the operating rate of domestic tire factories. With the recovery next week, the negative impact is expected to ease. At the same time, after the pullback last week, the RU non-standard spreads continue to narrow. It is expected that the above two factors will limit the room for rubber prices to continue to fall next week. From the perspective of later fundamentals, domestic production will gradually pick up, and major overseas production areas will also enter the peak season. In the short term, attention may be paid to the possibility of slowing imports caused by the continuous increase in ocean freight. Domestic imports have dropped significantly in May, and if it continues to affect the reduction of domestic port stocks in the later period, it may bring about short-term price fluctuations. Demand is currently showing off-season characteristics, domestic demand has weakened from the previous month, and exports are still weak due to tight container conditions. Given the weak mid-term supply and demand expectations, it is expected that rubber prices will continue to fluctuate at low levels. The short-term price is expected to stabilize due to the small non-standard spread.
Risk points: production may increase sharply, inventory may continue to accumulate, and demand may fall sharply.
Crude oil: Cushing's structural shortage supported the strengthening of inter-month spread of WTI.
Oil prices continued to strengthen last week, but it is more noteworthy that the spread between WTI and Brent continued to narrow to historical lows. From the perspective of the drive of the narrowing of the spread, it is mainly from the WTI end, that is, the strong inter-month spread of WTI, which shows that the price of WTI has appeared some signs of soft squeeze in recent months. This happened in history when Cushing's inventory was approaching historical lows (below 30 million barrels). Cushing is known as the "energy blood bank" of the United States. It is an important pass for the north oil (Canada, Bakken) to go south, and it is also a transfer station for the south oil to go north (Permain, DSW). The most important point is that it is the delivery point of Nymex WTI crude oil futures, so it is a particularly special presence in the US energy geography.
And why the market has such a strong expectation of destocking of the Cushing inventory at present, we believe that there are the following points:
1. The recovery of shale oil production in the United States is uneven. The main production area of Permain resumed production relatively quickly, but the crude oil production area in the north such as Bakken resumed production slowly. Since Permain has successively opened several crude oil pipelines to the U.S. Gulf in recent years, the number of direct exports from Permain to U.S. Gulf refineries or terminals has continued to increase. As the number of Northbound Cushing transmissions to the Midwest refinery decreases, Cushing's attributes as a transfer station for North Oil to South will become stronger and stronger. As a result, the supply of northern light oil, mainly Bakken, has been reduced this year. Cushing’s local flagship grade crude oil DSW is a blend of a variety of domestically produced light oils. Insufficient supply of the key blending raw material Bakken has led to a decrease in DSW supply.
2. The operating rate of refineries in the Midwest has recently recovered significantly faster than that of Gulf Coast refineries. From the perspective of operating rate, the current Midwest refinery is about 1 to 2% higher than the US Gulf refinery, that is, from a marginal point of view, the Midwest refinery's marginal demand for Cushing crude oil continues to increase.
3. Starting from mid-to-late May, the Centurion pipeline, a key pipeline from Texas to Cushing, reversed. The crude oil transportation capacity of the pipeline is about 250,000 barrels per day. After the reversal, the net inflow capacity of Cushing will be reduced by 500,000 barrels per day.
4. The current strong back structure of WTI crude oil has prompted local traders to speed up the destocking, thus forming a positive feedback on the inter-month spread.
On the whole, due to the superposition of various factors, Cushing’s inventory has fallen rapidly. At present, the only way to force a reversal of logistics is by giving a high regional premium. The current WTI Cushing premium to WTI Permain, WTI MEH and Bakken crude oil has reached historical highs, which will stimulate:
1. The amount of Permain crude oil flowing to Cushing increased, and the amount flowing to the U.S. Gulf decreased;
2. Stimulate Bakken to increase production and increase the supply of North Oil going south;
3. The Cushing to the US Gulf arbitrage window is closed to reduce the supply from Cushing to the US Gulf through the Seaway and Marketlink pipelines.
With reference to the historical situation, Cushing’s inventory usually bottoms out when it reaches a historical low. This is directly related to the negative feedback mechanism between its spread and logistics, and it does not make Cushing’s inventory really close to the bottom of the tank. However, if Cushing's inventory cannot rise in a short period of time, the logic of squeezing is expected to continue. Considering that it takes at least one month to adjust from the spread to the logistics, we believe that the local structural shortage in Cushing may last until late August or even early September.
Strategy: neutrally, tend to be bullish in the short term; go long positions of INE crude oil and short positions of Brent or WTI futures
Risks: The Iranian nuclear agreement may be reached quickly or OPEC may increase production beyond expectations.
Copper: The premiums and discounts are gradually rising, and there is a certain amount of support below the copper price.
According to SMM, the average price of SMM1# electrolytic copper in the week of July 2 was between 68,145 yuan/ton and 68,665 yuan/ton, and the average premium and discount price of Standard-Grade Copper was between 25 yuan/ton and 120 yuan/ton. Last week, the copper price was basically in a narrow range of fluctuations, but the premium and discount continued to show a low recovery state, showing that holders still have a certain sentiment for supporting price, which may make the copper price still have a certain degree of support.
Last week, it can be found that TC prices are still showing a trend of continuing to rise, coupled with the recent implementation of the tapering policy and the gradual emergence of copper scrap, so the current supply side, the pressure on copper prices may still be relatively large. On the demand side, the current traditional peak season is about to pass, but some of the demand that has been suppressed due to the previous excessively high prices may emerge after the fall in copper prices. Therefore, overall, the current copper price may still maintain a volatile pattern.
Medium and long term:
In the medium and long term, macroeconomically, the global central banks will continue to maintain the current ultra-loose monetary and fiscal policies in the short term. Although the U.S. dollar has moved strongly after the interest rate meeting, it is largely an overdraft for future economic growth. In terms of fundamentals, the current TC price continues to rise, coupled with the domestic rumor of tapering, so the supply side has a relatively negative impact on copper prices. On the demand side, China’s current control of the epidemic is still very successful, and the new energy and new infrastructure sector will continue to drive copper demand. However, due to the current market interference from the rumors of the Federal Reserve tapering and the possible tightening of central bank liquidity around the world, in general, we recommend that investors maintain a relatively neutral attitude.
1. Unilateral: neutrally
2. Inter-market: postpone
3. Inter-period: postpone
4. Options: postpone
1. The risk of tightening liquidity
2. Domestic delivery situation
3. Destocking in the second quarter fell short of expectations
PTA: The Yisheng Dahua plant has been shut down for a short period of time, and investors need to continue to pay attention to the implementation of the July maintenance.
Balance sheet outlook: If TA overhauls are too small, there will be an inflection point of the accumulated inventory in mid-to-late July. If TA overhauls are fully fulfilled, the inventory will continue to accumulate in July, and the inflection point may move back again. The accumulation rate of PX inventory in July is limited, and it is expected that the space for compression of PX processing fees is limited.
Strategic recommendations: (1) Unilateral: cautiously bullish (2) Intertemporal: The 09 contract holdings are much larger than the deliverable inventory, and there is greater emotional uncertainty. Therefor, it is recommended to take a wait-and-see attitude. The inflection point of the inventory accumulation is postponed to late July or early August, as the open interest of 09 contracts gradually fall, the 9-1 spread may gradually peak and then fall.
Risks: The implementation of the PTA plant maintenance plan, the strength of the negative feedback of the maintenance of polyester filament, and the sustainability of the improvement in the supply and demand of aromatics due to the gasoline premium.
单边 ：短期偏强 中期承压
上周油价继续走强，但更值得注意的是WTI与Brent价差持续收窄至历史低位，从价差缩窄的驱动来看，主要来自WTI端，即WTI月差的强劲，这显示出WTI近月价格已经出现了一些软挤仓的迹象，这在历史上在库欣库存逼近历史低位时（3000万桶以下）也出现过类似情况，库欣被称为美国“能源血库”，即是北油（加拿大、Bakken）南下的重要隘口，同时也是南油北上（Permain、DSW）的中转站，最为重要一点是他是Nymex WTI原油期货的交割点，因此其在美国能源地理上是尤为特殊的存在。而当前为何市场对于库欣库存有着如此之强的去库预期，我们认为有以下几点：1、美国页岩油生产复苏快慢不均，Permain主产区复产较为迅速，但北边的原油产区如Bakken复产缓慢，而自从近些年来Permain陆续开通了数条直达美湾的原油管道之后，Permain直输到美湾炼厂或者码头出口的数量不断增加，而北上库欣在输至中西部炼厂的数量减少，库欣作为北油南下中转站的属性就越来越强，因此今年以来以Bakken为主的北方轻油南下供应减少，而库欣本地旗舰品级原油DSW为多种国产轻油的混兑原油，关键调和原料Bakken供给不足导致DSW供应减少；2、近期中西部炼厂的开工率复苏要明显快于美湾炼厂，从开工率上看，目前中西部炼厂已经高于美湾炼厂约1~2%，即从边际上来看，中西部炼厂对库欣原油边际需求持续增加；3、5月中下旬开始，从德州到库欣的一条较为关键的管道Centurion管道逆转，该管道原油输送能力约25万桶/日，逆转之后另库欣当地的净流入能力减少50万桶/日，4、当前WTI原油强Back结构促使当地贸易商加速去库，从而让月差月库欣形成了正向反馈。综合来看，由于多种因素的叠加导致库欣库存快速下降，目前只有通过给出地区高溢价的方式倒逼物流的逆转，当前WTI Cushing对WTI Permain、WTI MEH以及Bakken原油的溢价均达到历史高位，这将刺激1、Permain原油流向库欣的数量增加，流向美湾的数量减少；2、刺激Bakken增产，让北油南下的供应增加；3、库欣到美湾套利窗口关闭，减少通过Seaway和 Marketlink管道从库欣南下至美湾的供应量。参考历史情况来看，库欣库存通常在达到历史低位以下就会出现见底反弹，这与其价差物流之间的负反馈机制直接相关，并不会让库欣库存真正接近罐底，但如果库欣库存无法在短时间内回升，预计挤仓的逻辑还会持续，考虑到从价差反应到物流上至少需要1个月时间调整，因此我们认为库欣当地的结构性短缺可能要持续到8月下旬甚至9月上旬。
铜： 升贴水逐步抬升 铜价下方存一定支撑
1. 单边：中性 2. 跨市：暂缓 3. 跨期：暂缓；4. 期权：暂缓
1. 流动性收紧的风险 2. 国内交仓情况 3. 2季度去库不及预期