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China iron ore futures plunge as price monitoring plan sours sentiment

06/21/2021 | 11:55pm EDT

BEIJING, June 22 (Reuters) - Benchmark iron ore futures in China tumbled for a second straight session on Tuesday, narrowing their gains to 30% so far in 2021 from more than 50% earlier, as Beijing's plans to step up inspection into commodity prices dented sentiment.

The most-traded iron ore contract on the Dalian Commodity Exchange, for September delivery, dropped as much as 5.2% to 1,110 yuan ($171.75) a tonne, the lowest in two weeks. It was down 3.6% at 1,128 yuan as of 0320 GMT.

"Following the recent macro policies… speculations have begun to cool down and iron ore prices have fluctuated", analysts at Huatai Futures wrote in a note.

China's state planner and market regulator on Monday looked into spot market at the Beijing Iron Ore Trading Center and said would closely monitor prices and investigate malicious speculation.

Spot prices of iron ore with 62% iron content for delivery to China, compiled by SteelHome consultancy, fell $7 to $210.5 per tonne on Monday. <SH-CCN-IRNOR62>

Meanwhile, the off-peak season for steel products and capacity controls at mills also weakened demand for steelmaking ingredients, Huatai Futures added.

Dalian coking coal fell 0.8% to 1,945 yuan a tonne.

Coke futures on the Dalian bourse slipped 0.8% to 2,650 yuan per tonne.

Construction rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange , for October delivery, declined 2.3% to 5,126 yuan a tonne.

Hot-rolled coils, used in the manufacturing sector, fell 3.0% to 5,126 yuan per tonne.

Shanghai stainless steel futures, for July delivery, gained 2.6% to 16,515 yuan a tonne.

($1 = 6.4628 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Min Zhang and Shivani Singh; editing by Uttaresh.V)

© Reuters 2021
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