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ASIA THERMAL COAL: Risk fears rise in CFR China cargo market as prices subside

News Source:http://www.jinchemical.com/ ; SendDate:2014-7-21 14:39:09 
Levels of buying interest for seaborne cargoes of 5,500 kcal/kg NAR thermal coal for delivery to ports in south China in the next 15-60 days continued to head lower in Asia trade Wednesday.

Many participants were holding back from committing to trades for fear of increased default risk, said market sources.

"Tightened credit control over bulk commodity trading may result in more delays to shipments and even defaults," a Beijing-based trader said.

Few interested buyers were active in the China spot market for imported cargoes of 5,500 kcal/kg NAR thermal coal. Their bids were at $65-65.50/mt CFR basis against offers at $66.50-67.50/mt, said several market sources.

A trader in Shandong province was in talks with a major supplier of Australian coal to delay the shipment of an August-delivery cargo of 5,500 kcal/kg NAR Australian thermal coal, according to a Chinese trader close to the situation. The cargo was booked at about $68.50/mt CFR in late June.

A Beijing-based trader heard some distressed Capesize cargoes of 5,500 kcal/kg NAR Australian coal soon to arrive in China were offered as low as Yuan 480/mt ($78.05/mt) CFR South China including 17% VAT. Power plant buying interest was Yuan 20 lower than this price, he said.

"Power plants have some demand, but they are not eager to buy because prices are decreasing. Suppliers are eager to sell, so buyers can postpone purchases to see if they can obtain a lower price," said a second trader in Beijing.


A number of international traders are carrying sizeable length in terms of their positions in the seaborne cargo market, and many are trying to find homes for cargoes they hold, said one trader in Singapore.

But stocks are building at mines in Australia and this is adding to the Asian market's oversupply, he said.

In China's domestic thermal coal market Wednesday prices were heard to trade at Yuan 0.50-1/mt lower than the previous day?s levels, though traders noted there has been a pick-up in vessel demand for coastal cargoes shipped to power plants in southern China.

A major supplier of Australian thermal coal was now offering August-September delivery cargoes at about $56/mt FOB, and down from $58/mt FOB in early July, a Shandong-based trader noted. His company was in talks to purchase one Capesize cargo of such material at about $66/mt CFR South China.

HIGH-ASH CAPES TRADE TO INDIA An India-based trader said a major Australian coal producer reportedly sold three Capesize cargoes of Australian 5,500 kcal/kg NAR coal to east coast India at $66-68/mt CFR level, and netting back to about $55/mt FOB basis.

A 130,000 mt vessel was fixed at $10.25/mt to sail from Newcastle in early to mid-August to Zhoushan in eastern China, and this rate would normalize to about $9.75/mt on a Newcastle to South China basis, said traders.

Branded Indonesian 5,500 kcal/kg NAR coal was offered for prompt-loading in Panamax cargoes at around $67/mt FOB for which Chinese buying interest was presently below $60/mt, said an Indonesia-based trader.

In the screen-traded market for Newcastle 6,000 kcal/kg NAR coal a September parcel for 25,000 mt was bid at $67/mt to an offer at $68.40/mt following a trade for this delivery date and cargo size at $67.65/mt FOB in Asia trade.

The last trade for September was on July 15 and went through at $68.50/mt FOB Newcastle on globalCOAL.

At the close of Asia trade, the Platts/Fenwei China Coal Index (CCI 1) for domestic thermal coal traded at Qinhuangdao port was assessed at Yuan 483/mt inclusive of VAT, and down Yuan 0.50 on day.

The CFR South China (CCI 8) price was assessed at $66/mt basis 5,500 kcal/kg NAR, excluding Chinese VAT, and was 25 cents lower than the previous day's assessment.

Platts assessed the FOB price of Newcastle 5,500 kcal/kg NAR thermal coal with typical ash of 20% at $57.70/mt, and 10 cents lower on day.

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