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.

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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