The year of 2006 saw a rapid growth in the prices of various non-ferrous metals and precious metals: the price growth of cuprum, aluminum, lead, zinc, stannum, nickel and gold were 96%, 40%, 66%, 137%, 70%, 151% and 42% respectively.
This caused a sharp rise of the profit both in non-ferrous metal mining industry and smelting & processing industry. From Jan. to Sept. of 2006, the former achieved an accumulated profit growth rate of 68.65% and the latter 105.88%, ranking fifth and third of all industries respectively.
Accumulated Profit Growth Rate of China's Non-ferrous Metal Smelting & Processing Industry, Jan.-Sept. 2006
It is noticed that after the new records in early May of 2006, differentiation appeared in varied types of metal. Cuprum and aluminum seemed to have a higher correlation degree, both of the prices declined to a large extent after the highest price on May 11th. By Nov. 30th, cuprum and aluminum depreciated by 17.67% and 14% respectively. Gold was sold at USD 728 per ounce on May 12th, which is the peak of 2006, and the current price is about USD 645.
Compared with cuprum and aluminum, the prices of lead, zinc, stannum and nickel also experienced adjustments after the peak on May 11th, then continuously increasing, and the momentum of exceeding cuprum price tended to be lucid. Stannum and nickel broke this year's price record on Oct. 17th and Nov. 30th respectively, while lead and zinc saw the yearly new record on Nov. 9th.
After decades or even centuries of large-scale exploitation, the global non-ferrous metal resources are becoming increasingly precious, so the prices have kept a long-term rising momentum. Due to the world's reascending economy and China's macro-control policy in 2007, the market demand of related industries will decrease accordingly; the growth speed in supply/demand and price of non-ferrous metal industry would decline from the peak, but not to a large extent, and some products are still urgently required in certain stages.