Nickel inventories at 13-month high. 'No hint' of demand pick-up

LME nickel stockpiles have jumped to the highest levels in more than a year as production climbs and demand weakens.

In May, worldwide refined nickel production rose to 143,000 tonnes exceeding demand by 7,300 tonnes according to the Lisbon-based International Nickel Study Group yesterday. It was the third month in a row where output exceeded consumption.

Bloomberg quotes London-based Leon Westgate, an analyst at Standard Bank: “We are still yet to see a hint of any demand improvement. Ample stocks of ore and metal in China, together with overcapacity outside China, means that the nickel market is unlikely to get particularly tight for the foreseeable future.”