Imports of molybdenum into China surged in February as overseas sellers stepped up competition with Chinese producers. Imports of moly have surged because Chinese producers have found themselves largely unable to compete with cheaper import offers.
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Government spending will spark a recovery in steel demand towards the end of the year; but its mark on the molybdenum market will be limited. Demand for molybdenum in China likely will rise 6 percent in 2009, then slip to 52,800 tonnes in 2010 before growing again in 2011.
Molybdenum prices are currently hovering around the $9 per lb mark, a drastic decline from last Augusts’ high of $34. Molybdenum managed to hold its price point longer than other metals; but in the fourth quarter of 2008 the steel industry’s defeat sent molybdenum on a free fall.