Iron ore prices improved slightly on Wednesday with the benchmark import price of 62% iron ore fines at China's Tianjin port up a fraction to $113.10 a tonne.
Slowing demand from China's steel foundry – the country consumes 60% of the world's iron ore – has seen ore prices decline 16% since the start of July and plummet from highs of $170–$180 a tonne this time last year according to data provided by Steelindex.
This is the new normal says Castello Branco, the director of investor relations for Brazil's Vale, the world's number one producer of iron ore:
"We are not going to see the spectacular growth rates of 10, 12 percent per year," Branco said at the Bloomberg Brazil Economic Summit in Rio today. "The golden years are gone."