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Iron Ore

Australia's Iron Ore Miners Hang Tough as Prices Fall

By James Regan, Reuters If Australian miners are worried about the dramatic decline in iron ore prices, it doesn't show. At an annual gathering of many of the world's biggest and smallest iron ore producers here the mood is upbeat - as if the heftiest one-day fall in ore prices since the global financial crisis never happened. "Iron ore mining isn't tennis, it's a contact sport," said David Flanagan, chairman of Atlas Iron Ltd. "Sometimes it hurts a bit, like you copped it in the stomach. We just get on with it." Iron ore for immediate delivery to China slumped 8 percent on Monday after data showed China's trade balance swung into deficit, amplifying concerns about a slowdown in the world's No. 2 economy and the biggest importer of the steel-making ingredient. Iron ore is down 22 percent so far this year to $104.70 a tonne, triggering comparisons with a slump in 2012 to below $90 that shuttered many mines and left producers rethinking expansion plans. Australia is expected to ship more than half a billion tonnes of iron ore to China in 2013. Like most Australian producers, Atlas is still in the black, putting its total costs of getting iron ore into China at A$70 to A$75 a tonne ($63 to $68 a tonne). "I'm just not fussed over what's gone on in the market this week," said Wayne Richards, executive chairman of Tawana Resources, which is digging an iron ore mine in Liberia.


China's Qingdao Port Probing Iron Ore Financing Fraud

China's Qingdao port said on Wednesday it is investigating whether iron ore warehouse receipts were fraudulently used multiple times to raise finance from different banks, Xinhua news agency reported. The probe is focussed on one trader with iron ore receipts, the Chinese news agency said. It follows a broad investigation earlier this year by Chinese authorities into the use of iron ore as collateral in financing deals.


Vale Profit Falls Amidst Record Output

Brazilian miner Vale SA posted a sharp decline in profit from the previous quarter as lower iron ore prices undermined record production of the steel-making ingredient. Vale, the world's largest producer of iron ore, reported second-quarter net income of $1.43 billion, down 43 percent on the previous quarter and below the average analyst estimate of $1.89 billion in a Reuters survey. "It was a very challenging environment where the price of our most important product has dropped by


JFE’s Ship Unit Targets Orders for Five Vessels

JFE Holdings Inc.’s shipbuilding unit is reportedly aiming to win orders for as many as five iron ore carriers, according to a report on www.businessweek.com. Iron-ore carriers including Nippon Yusen K.K. and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd. are expanding dry-bulk fleets to tap demand for the steelmaking material. Exports of the ore from Australia, the world’s largest shipper, are forecast to rise at an average annual rate of 7 percent to 2015


Iron-Ore Ship Rates Rise as China Spends

Iron-Ore carrier daily rates rebound as China spends US$158-billion. Iron-ore ships are poised to earn more than operating costs for the first time this year as rates rally on speculation Chinese steel mills will accelerate imports because of a 1 trillion-yuan ($158 billion) building program, reports Bloomberg Business News. Capesizes, each carrying 160,000 metric tons of ore, will earn $12,500 a day in the fourth quarter


China's Demand Slows, BDI Index Unlikely to Jump

According to a London report issued Aug. 14, dry bulk freight rate index climbed by 2.5% on Friday at Baltic Mercantile and Shipping Exchange, a moderate rise for two consecutive days. Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) indicated in its report that China's bulk commodity import will slow down, and that China's bulk material import is predicted to drop from record high and slacken afterwards, according to Financial Times, Aug. 17.


SKorean Shipbuilders Lower on Steel Price Concerns

Shares of shipbuilders and automakers were lower in late morning trading as investors react belatedly to the possible increase in steel prices, reports indicated Hyundai Heavy Industries was down 4,500 won or 1.2 percent at 380,000 won, Samsung Heavy Industries was off 600 won or 1.9 percent to 30,400 won and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering fell 300 won or 0.8 percent to 39,300 won. Hyundai Motor was down 1,300 won or 1.9 percent at 67,600 won and Kia Motors down 50 won or 0


Baltic Freight Index up on Higher Dry Bulk Activity

Reuters - The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Monday. The overall index, which factors in the average daily earnings of capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize dry bulk transport vessels, rose 19 points to 1,562. The Baltic's capesize index rose 43 points or 1.4 percent to 3,023 points. Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal


BHP Iron Ore Mines Resume Operation

Reuters reported that BHP Billiton’s Australian iron ore mines have recommenced work at full operation following a cyclone that battered coastal regions and closed major shipping terminals this week. “Port Hedland, the world's biggest iron ore terminal and used by BHP to export nearly 200 million metric tons of the steel-making material annually, sustained only minor damage from Cyclone Christine and reopened late on Tuesday,” Reuters said.


Largest New Shipping Order

China's largest private shipbuilder has signed this year’s biggest deal in terms of dead weight tons, according to the company. Jiangsu Rongsheng Heavy Industries Group signed a contract Friday with Oman Shipping to build four iron ore carriers, each with a dead weight of 400,000 tons. The deal is the second largest for the company after a contract for 12 iron ore carriers was inked with Brazilian mining giant Vale last August


Rio Tinto rejects Glencore Merger

Glencore approached Rio Tinto about a merger in July. A tie-up would have created the world's biggest miner. No further talks with Glencore after rejecting bid-Rio. Rio Tinto rejected a merger approach from smaller rival Glencore Plc to create a $160 billion mining and trading giant in August


Glencore Seeks Rio Tinto Merger

FPSO Aseng sailaway. (Photo: Glencore)

Commodities giant Glencore has started talks with Rio Tinto's largest shareholder, Aluminium Corp of China (Chinalco), as it seeks to pave the way for a possible merger in 2015, Bloomberg News reported on Monday. Reuters reported last month that Glencore could make a move for mining rival Rio


Kosmos to Buy into Senegal Offshore Blocks for $400 mln

Senegal Offshore Blocks

  Kosmos Energy is set to sign a $400 million "farm-in" agreement with Senegal's state-owned hydrocarbon firm Petrosen and Timis Corp to take a 60 percent stake in the Cayar and St. Louis offshore blocks that they operate, a draft Petrosen document seen by Reuters on Saturday showed


China to Straighten Transport Bottlenecks by 2020

Vehicles are seen on Changan Avenue at the rush hour in Beijing, August 29, 2013.

China aims to ease transport bottlenecks which are affecting economic development by 2020 with a plan announced on Saturday to tackle issues such as excessive road tolls and poor connectivity and to ensure the smoother flow of goods. Despite billions of dollars being invested in recent years on


BHP Supports Ebola Response Efforts

Business Director West Africa Iron Ore, Graham Reynolds

 In response to the widespread devastation caused by the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, BHP Billiton Sustainable Communities has donated US$400,000 to the Pooled World Health Organisation (WHO) Ebola Response fund. The contribution from BHP Billiton will provide immediate actions to


First Damen Crane Barge to head to Uruguay

 Damen Crane Barge

  Damen Shipyard Group’s new transshipment Crane Barge (CBa) 6324 has got off to a strong start, with an order for the first unit from a client in Uruguay. The barge features the proven Liebherr CBG 350 crane as standard and on this occasion has been outfitted with a unique mooring


Vale to Lease 10 China Merchant Bulkers

Brazil's iron ore miner Vale SA said on Friday it secured a deal with China Merchants Group to lease for 25 years as many as 10 very large ore carriers, which will be built by China Merchants, to ship ore from Brazil to mainland China. Vale had commissioned at least 35 VLOCs


Cargo Growth at Indian Ports Remain Sluggish

Vizag seaport, Andhra Pradesh

  In FY14, total cargo handled at Indian ports increased by 4.3% to 976 million tonnes from 935 million tonnes during FY13. The growth was pegged down by sluggish cargo performance at the major ports which registered a meagre 1.8% growth in cargo volumes to 556 million tonnes in FY14.


Great Lakes Dry Cargo Residue Discharge Rule in Effect

The U.S. Coast Guard published a final rule to the Federal Register announcing that it has received approval from the Office of Management and Budget for an information collection request associated with the January 2014 final rule on the discharge of bulk dry cargo residue on the U.S


Vale, Cosco to Cooperate on Iron Ore Shipping

Brazilian miner Vale SA reached a deal with China Ocean Shipping Co (Cosco) for transporting iron ore, a move that could help the Brazilian miner resolve a costly two-year ban on docking its mega-ships at Chinese ports. Vale said in a statement that it would transfer ownership of four very


Great Lakes Ore Trade in High Gear in August

For the second month in a row, shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes reached their highest level in six years. The 7,242,492 tons loaded in August are the most since July 2008 when 7,318,961 tons moved from U.S. and Canadian ports. The August ore float also represents a slight increase over


Another Strong Month for US Lakes Fleet

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 11 million tons of cargo in August, their second-highest monthly total in two years. The August float, while down 3.2 percent from July, also represents an increase of 5 percent compared to a year ago.


Grounded Freighter Refloated in Straits of Mackinac

The American Spirit, a 1004-foot freighter that had been hard aground in the Straits of Mackinac since Thursday afternoon, was refloated early Friday morning. The vessel is making way to St. Ignace, Michigan, where it will anchor. Coast Guard marine inspectors and American Bureau Shipping


Big Laker Aground in Straits of Mackinaw

American Spirit: Photo courtesy of ASC

The US Coast Guard informs it is responding to the 1004-foot freighter 'American Spirit' after it ran aground in the Straits of Mackinac (which connect Lake Michigan and Lake Huron) reporting as follows: At 6:30 p.m., Thursday, a search-and-rescue controller at Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste


St. Lawrence Seaway Cargos up 3% over 2013

CSL Assiniboine loading iron ore at the CN/Duluth dock. Photo by Diane Hilden/courtesy Duluth Seaway Port Authority

Total cargo shipments on the St. Lawrence Seaway have surpassed 2013 levels despite one of the most difficult starts to the shipping season in years due to ice coverage. According to Seaway figures, total cargo tonnage from March 25 to August 31 reached 20 million metric tons






 
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