The global deficit in lead supply increased during the first 11 months of 2019 compared to 2018, while zinc posted a deficit during the same period, compared to a surplus in 2018 according to the World Bureau of Metal Statistics (WBMS).
The global lead market had a 344kt (344,000mt) deficit through the first 11 months of 2019, increasing from a 243kt deficit through all of 2018. At the end of November 2019, total lead stocks declined by 16kt compared to the previous year according to WBMS data.
Global production of refined lead through the first 11 months of 2019 from primary and secondary sources totaled 11,198kt—a 5pc increase over the same period in 2018. Apparent demand from China was an estimated 5,313kt, which, in addition to comprising 46pc of the world’s total, is 665kt more than the 11 months of 2018. US apparent demand rose by 8kt between January and November 2019 compared to the same 11-month period in 2018.
Refined lead production in November 2019 totaled 1,079.7kt and consumption was 1,099.4kt.
The global zinc market recorded a deficit of 174.1kt through the first 11 months of 2019, from a 109kt surplus recorded through all of 2018. Reported stocks declined by 48kt through January to November 2019 with a net increase of 25.7kt in Shanghai.
Zinc inventories in LME warehouses increased in November, however, they still closed short of the December 2018 level. LME stocks comprise 12pc of the worldwide total, although the majority of stocks are located in Taiwanese and Dutch warehouses.
Worldwide refined zinc output increased by 3.1pc, while consumption rose by 5.7pc compared to a year earlier. At 469kt, Japanese apparent demand was 6.2pc higher than it was between January and November 2018.
Between January and November 2019, global zinc demand rose by 699kt compared to the same 11-month period a year prior. Chinese apparent demand was 6,213kt, comprising 48pc of worldwide demand.
In November 2019, slab zinc output totaled 1,245.3kt, while consumption was 1,251.6kt.