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Chart of the week: nickel bucks the metals trend

The price of nickel has soared by almost a quarter to a 13-month high in just a fortnight.

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Concern over global growth has depressed the prices of many metals in recent weeks. Nickel has been an exception, however, soaring by almost a quarter to a 13-month high in just a fortnight.

In mid-July Indonesia, the second-largest exporter of nickel ore after the Philippines and a major supplier to China's steel industry, said it would stick to plans to stop exports of unprocessed ore in 2022 in order to encourage domestic stainless steel production.

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The price jump also reflects robust steel production in China in the first half and dwindling stockpiles: demand has eclipsed supply for five years. Traders are also looking forward to higher long-term demand as nickel is a component in batteries for electric vehicles.

Viewpoint

The Observer

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