China Surprises with Rise in Commodity Imports

China’s imports of commodities surged unexpectedly last month putting the world’s second-largest economy on track to set records for shipments of iron ore, coal and soybeans even as concerns linger about slowing economic growth.

For some markets, like soybeans, the robust buying was in line with seasonal expectations as livestock farmers scooped up feed for their animals ahead of peak demand for pork and other meat during the nation’s week-long Spring festival.

In iron ore, the surge to one of the highest on record was partly due to the arrival of shipments delayed by the week-long Golden Week festival at the end of October.

Still, the buying was surprisingly strong even as steel mills and copper fabricators prepared to slow output for weaker demand from the construction sector during the winter months.

“The rise in copper imports reflected in part a rise in Shanghai Futures Exchange inventories and stronger demand from the Chinese power and construction sectors,” said Vivek Dhar, commodities analyst with Commonweealth Bank of Australia in Melbourne.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza