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Fortescue widens November FBF iron ore fines discount

27 Oct 2017, 8.22 am GMT

Fortescue widens November FBF iron ore fines discount

Singapore, 27 October (Argus) — Australian iron ore producer Fortescue will widen the November discount for 58.3pc Fe blended fines (FBF), after initially saying the discount would stay unchanged.

The discount for FBF fines will be 25.5pc for November 62pc index-linked cargoes, compared with 23pc for October, market participants said. The discount for 56.7pc superspecial fines (SSF) will stay unchanged at 40pc.

Fortescue yesterday revised down its average price guidance for iron ore relative to the benchmark price to 70-75pc for the current financial year that started 1 July, from 75-80pc previously.

The 170mn t/yr producer has seen its pricing power eroded this year by mills' shift to higher Fe ores. The 65pc index has risen to as much as a 40pc premium to the 62pc index, mirroring the wider discount for SSF fines, as supply of 65pc IOCJ fines is more limited than 56-58pc Fe fines into China.

India nearly doubled its iron ore exports to China to 24mn t in January-September, most of it lower Fe Goan fines.

The rapid expansion in discounts has unwound seaborne trade for Fortescue iron ores this year, as most contracts used month-ahead indexing that is not profitable in a falling market.

Trade has shifted to cash portside markets.

SSF traded at 281 yuan/wet metric tonne (wmt) fot Shandong yesterday, a 40pc discount to the Argus 62pc PCX index at Yn470/wmt. SSF has traded at an average Yn280/wmt in October for an average 42pc discount to the PCX, down from Yn318/wmt in September but flat from the average 42pc discount in September.

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