Davis Index: Market Intelligence for the Global Metals and Recycled Materials Markets

China’s exports of iron and steel products dropped by 23pc in May and imports of the same rose by 30pc from the prior year month, according to official data. Trades of copper and aluminium products showed the same trend with imports of unwrought aluminium and aluminium products up 165pc from a year ago.


The COVID-19 pandemic effected most countries, suppressing demand for China’s exports, even as producers and manufacturers in China ramped up production in April and May.    


China’s exports in May
CommodityMayYoY % ChangeJan-May
Iron & steel products440,000-23.225,000,000
*Bars & rods69-11.53,550,000
*Angles, sections20-40.81,370,000
*Sheets and plates246-27.515,370,000
Unwrought copper and copper products47,698-38.4336,155
Unwrought aluminium and aluminium products382,935-28.52,011,857


Post the pandemic, stimulus package disbursed by China’s provincial authorities encouraged Chinese mills and smelters to buy raw material from overseas markets. Taking advantage of the global weakness in demand, Chinese importers stocked up inventories at competitive prices.  


China’s imports in May
CommodityMayYoY % ChangeJan-May
Iron & steel products1,280,00030.3546
Unwrought copper and copper products436,03121.02,184,516
Unwrought aluminium and aluminium products119,145164.8527,783
Iron ores and concentrates87,030,0004.0445,310,000
Copper ores and concentrates1,690,000-8.09,260,000
Aluminum ores and concentrates100,000-17.3460,000

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