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Rare Earths in the First Half of the Market Is Difficult to Improve

May. 24, 2023

Downstream demand is sluggish, rare earth prices have fallen back to two years ago. Although the price of rare earth has rebounded slightly recently, many industry insiders said that the current price of rare earth stabilization lacks support and will probably continue to fall. From a comprehensive point of view, the industry predicts that the price range of praseodymium oxide is between 300,000 yuan/ton and 450,000 yuan/ton, with 400,000 yuan/ton becoming a watershed.

 PrNd oxide and Dysprosium oxide(1).jpg

"It is expected that the price of praseodymium oxide will hover at 400,000/t for some time and will not fall so fast. 300,000/t may take until next year." A senior industry insider, who did not want to be named, said.


Downstream "buy up not buy down", the first half of the rare earth market is difficult to improve


Since February this year, rare earth prices have entered the downward channel and are now at the same price level as at the beginning of 2021. Among them, the price of praseodymium oxide has fallen by nearly 40%, while dysprosium oxide fell by nearly 25% and terbium oxide by over 41% in the medium and heavy rare earths. Rare earth analysts believe that the oversupply will ease in the second quarter as a result of the rainy season and a reduction in rare earth ore imports from Southeast Asia. "Short-term rare earth prices as a whole may continue to run in a narrow range of oscillation, but long-term price bearish. Downstream raw material inventories are already at a low level and a wave of procurement is expected to emerge in late May to June."

 Rare Earths in the First Half of the Market Is Difficult to Improve

At present, the downstream magnetic material enterprises a echelon start rate of about 8-9%, full production is relatively small; second echelon start rate of basically 6-7%, small enterprises about 50%, Guangdong and Zhejiang areas, some small workshops have stopped production. According to the latest weekly report of the Baotou Rare Earth Products Exchange, the recent shrinkage of production capacity of small and medium-sized magnetic enterprises and the unstable price of the oxide market have led to little shipment of scrap from magnetic plants and a substantial reduction in turnover; in terms of magnetic materials, enterprises are just in need of procurement.


It is worth mentioning that the previous May 8-9, praseodymium oxide prices rose slightly for two consecutive days triggered market concern, there are views that rare earth prices appear signs of stabilization. In this regard, Zhang Biao said, "This wave of small rise one is because the head of several magnetic bidding metal, two is Ganzhou area long-agreement delivery period in advance, the replenishment period is concentrated, resulting in the market spot circulation show tension, prices rose slightly." "At present, the terminal orders have not seen an improvement. Many purchasers in last year when rare earth prices rose to purchase more rare earth raw materials, now still in the de-stocking stage, coupled with the mentality of buy up not buy down, the more rare earth prices fall the more reluctant they are to buy." Yang Jiawen said, "According to our forecast, the downstream inventory continues to be low, the demand side of the market will improve in June at the earliest." "At present, the company's inventory is also not high, you can consider starting to come out and buy some, but certainly not when the price is falling, buy when it is definitely rising." A magnetic material enterprise purchasing person said so.



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