ArcelorMittal Sourcing, the raw materials buying unit of the world’s second-biggest steelmaker, awarded a sell tender for a cargo of premium hard coking coal March 1 to trader Trafigura in the 10th such tender held over the past year.
The 42,000 mt of Illawara — a South32 coal with 24% volatile matter on an air-dried basis — is due to load March 24-April 2. It was awarded to the highest bid at $362/mt FOB Port Kembla after drawing interest from a total of six counterparties, comprising five traders and an end-user.
The price level was $15/mt higher than the Platts Premium Low Vol assessment of $347/mt FOB Australia on Feb. 28. Platts assessed the brand relativity of Illawara at parity to the PLV assessment.
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“There [is] still end-user demand at current levels, especially in the [Southeast Asian] markets, for late March to early April [loading] cargoes,” a source at one of the tender participants said.
The tender saw market participants place bids that were subject to Platts incrementability guidelines of a maximum movement of $2/mt and a minimum of $1/mt every five minutes, thereby allowing price levels to be tested in a gradual manner. Bidders maintained real-time communication with Platts via email, mobile phone and instant messenger.
Steelmakers like ArcelorMittal and India’s JSW Steel have since February 2022 offered to sell coking coal via tenders published by Platts, a part of S&P Global Commodity Insights, in view of weak coke- and steelmaking margins.