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April 16, 2020

Covid-19’s impact on the aluminium industry

By Duncan West

Aluminium prices have followed a similar trend to the other base metals with the spread of the coronavirus. Prices fell by 21.49% from $1,807/t on 22 January to $1,421.5/t on 8 April. Intermittent price rises could not be sustained on the back of concerns of diminishing demand from the key consuming sectors of transportation and construction.

With a contribution of more than 50% of aluminium consumption, the fall in the demand from the transportation and construction industries has significantly impacted the price of aluminium.

After an initial increase in inventories due to demand from smelters, with declining demand from end user segments, LME warehouses have seen a 26.9% increase in inventories from 0.96Mt (million tonnes) on 18 March to 1.22Mt on 8 April.

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