BEIJING – S&P Global Platts, which produces an iron ore benchmark index, said on Monday iron-ore prices have been resilient and activity levels have remained healthy recently.
On Sunday, the China Iron & Steel Association (CISA) had warned about speculation risks in the market as the iron ore index was deviating from supply and demand fundamentals and the spot market.
Platts said in an email to Reuters: "The physical spot market has been supported by weather-related supply disruptions in both Brazil and Australia." The company also said that 25 seaborne transactions had been reported for the main five iron-ore brands in March.
The vice chairman of CISA Luo Tiejun had suggested the compiling of price index should be based on real transaction prices in spot market and free from the impact of financial derivatives.
Platts said its assessment of iron ore prices is based on information reported by physical market participants, including actual transactions and firm bids and offers for physical cargoes of iron ore.
The company also said futures markets do play a role in shaping market sentiment as in many commodities.
"(This) in turn can result in an increase or decrease in the value that market participants are willing to bid or offer for physical cargoes," Platts said.
The most-traded iron ore futures contract on the Dalian Commodity Exchange, with May delivery, has gained nearly 10% since Feb.3. It closed up 0.5% on Monday.