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Another 10MT of iron ore off the market as Vale halts Alegria mine

Brazil’s Vale has halted operations at the Alegria iron mine in the Mariana complex of Minas Gerais state, which may remove up to 10 million tonnes of iron ore a year from the market. The preventive measure, said the world’s top iron ore producer, was taken after a stress test failed to guarantee stability of the mine’s structures. Vale noted it would restart production when new studies are completed and their results are conclusive. What’s unclear is what “structures” Vale is referring to. Based on data provided by Brazil’s regulator, ...

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Rio Tinto’s chief sees ‘lots of opportunities’ despite China’s slowing growth

The head of mining giant Rio Tinto says he isn’t worried about China’s slowing growth — and he sees “lots of opportunities” in the world’s second largest economy. “There is no doubt that the Chinese economy is still slowing down, but it is as expected. Even growing 6, and 6 and a half percent, is a massive number,” CEO Jean-Sébastien Jacques told CNBC’s Eunice Yoon at the China Development Forum in Beijing on Saturday. Compared with growth rate of Europe, the U.S. and Canada, China’s projected expansion of 6 to ...

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Paris wheat comes off 3-week high, market eyes Saudi barley tender

Euronext wheat futures ended little changed on Friday, easing from an earlier three-week high as technical resistance countered support from adverse U.S. weather and brisk French exports. Benchmark May milling wheat on Paris-based Euronext settled up 0.50 euro, or 0.3 percent, at 189.50 euros ($214.00) a tonne. The contract had earlier climbed to 190.75, its highest since Feb. 27, supported by a weaker euro and strength in Chicago corn and wheat futures linked to flood damage in the U.S. Midwest. But the Euronext benchmark stalled in the face of chart ...

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Coal miners on rampage

The government has again demonstrated how pathetic it has been in coping with the environmental problems caused by abandoned coal-mine pits, which have increasingly become death traps for children and polluted food crops with acidic water in Kalimantan. Those huge black holes have even become an environmental time bomb because provincial and regency administration leaders who often treat mining firms as cash cows for their political interests seem reluctant to enforce the mining regulations on compulsory reclamation. General mine director general Bambang Gatot told a meeting with the Commission VII ...

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EU bases planned Indonesian palm oil restriction on 2015 data

In response to Jakarta’s objection to a European Union bill that would cap the use of palm-oil-based biofuels in the region, the bloc explained that the regulation was not meant to target specific biofuels or feedstocks, but was based on deforestation data from 2008 to 2015 that showed large a proportion of the deforestation was associated with palm oil. The EU said that the bill was supported by a report based on the best available scientific data from 2008 to 2015, which showed that palm oil has been associated with ...

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CBOT crop futures settle mixed, corn higher on China buying

Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) agricultural futures settled mixed on Friday, with corn rising over confirmed purchase from China and severe flooding that hit U.S. Midwest. CBOT corn contract for May delivery was up 2 cents, or 0.53 percent, to close at 3.7825 dollars per bushel. May wheat was down 0.5 cent, or 0.11 percent, to settle at 4.66 dollars per bushel. May soybeans were down 6.75 cents, or 0.74 percent, to close at 9.0375 dollars per bushel. The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday morning confirmed sales by private ...

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Grain markets walled off from flood impacts by mountains of supplies

A massive supply of grains has shielded the futures markets from the impact of flooding in the U.S. Midwest so far, with traders largely shrugging off this week’s reports of destroyed storage bins, swamped elevators and questions about if waters will recede in time for planting. The problem is grain glut that has long weighed over commodities markets, said Tom Grisafi, a market advisor at commodity brokerage Advance Trading. “If we lost 50 million bushels of beans, would it matter?” asked Grisafi. “If 100 million bushels of corn were gone, ...

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China iron ore edges up amid mixed signals on Vale supply

Chinese iron ore futures edged higher in choppy trade on Friday amid conflicting signals about supply from the world’s top producer Vale SA, but posted their first weekly loss in four weeks. A Brazilian court in Minas Gerais state ordered Vale to halt operations at the iron ore complex of Dique III, according to a court document seen by Reuters on Thursday. But its impact on production remains unclear. Vale has been targeted by several court verdicts related to mines that use dams similar to the one that burst in ...

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Indonesia, China slap anti-dumping duties on each other’s steel products

Indonesia and China on Friday slapped anti-dumping import duties on each other’s steel products in an escalation of a global tariff row involving one of the world’s most widely used metals. Indonesia extended anti-dumping import duties of up to 20 percent for a number of flat-rolled iron and steel products from seven countries, including China, Russia and India. The duties, which have been in place since 2013, affect Chinese giants Angang Steel Co and Baoshan Iron and Steel Co, Russia’s Severstal and India’s Essar Steel. The extension will take effect ...

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Grain markets walled off from flood impacts by mountains of supplies

A massive supply of grains has shielded the futures markets from the impact of flooding in the U.S. Midwest so far, with traders largely shrugging off this week’s reports of destroyed storage bins, swamped elevators and questions about if waters will recede in time for planting. The problem is grain glut that has long weighed over commodities markets, said Tom Grisafi, a market advisor at commodity brokerage Advance Trading. “If we lost 50 million bushels of beans, would it matter?” asked Grisafi. “If 100 million bushels of corn were gone, ...

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Brazil court orders Vale to halt operations at Dique III mine

A Brazilian court in the city of Nova Lima, Minas Gerais state, ordered mining company Vale SA to halt operations at the iron ore complex of Dique III in the state, according to a court document seen by Reuters on Thursday. There was no immediate comment from Vale regarding the decision or any information on potential impact on iron ore production. Vale has been targeted by several court verdicts related to mines that use dams similar to the one that burst in the town of Brumadinho in January, killing over ...

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China sets antidumping measures on steel products from EU, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia

China’s commerce ministry said on Friday it will impose temporary antidumping measures on stainless steel billet and hot-rolled stainless steel plate from the European Union, Japan, South Korea and Indonesia from March 23. The ministry said it will collect deposits from companies including Japan’s Nippon Yakin Kogyo Co. Ltd and South Korea’s POSCO ranging from 18.1 percent to 103.1 percent. Source: Reuters (Reporting by Beijing Newsroom and Dominique Patton; editing by Richard Pullin)

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Iron ore futures close higher

Iron ore futures closed higher on Friday at the Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE). The most active iron ore contract for May delivery gained 3 yuan (about 0.45 U.S. dollars) to close at 615.5 yuan per tonne. On Friday, the total trading volume of 10 listed iron ore futures contracts on the exchange was 1,413,120 lots with a turnover of 84.93 billion yuan. As the world’s largest importer of iron ore, China opened the DCE iron ore futures to international investors in May 2018. Source: Xinhua

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Australian iron ore supply shouldn’t be too disrupted by Cyclone Veronica, unless it floods the mines

Iron ore operations in Australia’s Pilbara region are unlikely to be impacted significantly by Tropical Cyclone Veronica, unless it leads to flooding at mines, says Vivek Dhar, Mining and Energy Commodities Strategist at the Commonwealth Bank. Here’s a short snippet from a report Dhar released earlier explaining why: The disruption to seaborne iron ore supply is expected to be around 10 million tonnes, or around 0.6% of seaborne supply, if the ports are shut for five days. A more serious disruption is possible if iron ore mines are flooded in ...

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Total US coal traffic totals 72,190, down 16% on year; drop led by PRB railroads: AAR

US coal carload originations totaled 72,190 in the week ended March 16, down 5.7% from the prior week and down 16% from the year-ago week, Association of American Railroads data showed. This was the largest year-on-year drop since the first week of September 2016, down 16.2%. Coal also took up 14.4% of total traffic, the smallest percentage since mid-May 2018, with 14.4%. From the five-year average of 89,589 in the 11th week of the year, coal originations were down 19.4%. Canadian carloads totaled 7,357, up 1.9% week on week and ...

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