July trade data remains strong. Sectors which have done well in July are steel & metal markets, growing 10% as well as the construction sector, growing 12%. This is of course a rebound effect from Covid and a healthy sign that the economy is starting to move and open up.
The coal market dropped back by 6% in July. Despite this, July’s decline came on the back of months of positive growth. It’s still a healthy 6% above last year’s figures.
Iron ore remains very strong, after 12% growth in June and just 1% decline in July. Levels are similar to this time last year. China remains the strong player in the Iron ore market with good readings in June and July at over 103 million tonnes. Levels haven’t been this high since September last year where they reached 108 million tonnes. This is certainly the driver behind recent strong rates in the middle of 2021.
Overall, agricultural trade is slightly below this time last year, however it’s been strong throughout the entire year so this is still very much a positive sign for a strong market.
Ores and minerals remain strong with the most gains seen in petcoke, reaching 5.1 million tonnes in July, the highest in a year.
An impressive story of the month was steel at 39 million tonnes in July, comparable to 31 million tonnes at the start of the year. The real gains were in flats, strong indication that the manufacturing sector has really picked up. Longs are also doing particularly well at 7.6 million tonnes, remaining strong compared to this time last year.