The iron ore price climbed on Monday as improving profitability of steel mills and demand outlook in China lifted sentiment.
Benchmark 62% Fe fines imported into Northern China rose 2.25%, to $132.51 per tonne.
The rapid rise in steel mills’ profits and their output expansion have boosted iron ore demand, Sinosteel Futures analysts said in a note.
The overall blast furnace capacity utilization rate edged up for the ninth straight week, rising another 0.89 percentage point on week to 88.03% over March 3-9, according to Mysteel.
“It’s a relatively heavy week of economic data releases in China, which we believe should corroborate the country’s economic recovery in February,” Navigate Commodities Managing Director Atilla Widnell said.
China is scheduled to release this week a raft of data, including industrial production. Chinese regulators, however, may take steps to curb surging iron ore prices.
Last week, Reuters reported that Beijing authorities are urging trading companies that store iron ore in big volumes at ports to sell some of their material, in order to cool the surge in prices.
(With files from Reuters)