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Cash trading in minor metals starts on the London Metal Exchange

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Cash trading in molybdenum and cobalt began on the London Metal Exchange on Wednesday, ahead of the first prompt date of 21 May.

Futures contracts were introduced to the market on 22 February this year, bringing regulated exchange pricing, risk management and clearing to these two metals which are used in a wide range of applications.

Since launch, 1,560 lots of cobalt have been traded, equivalent to 1,560 tonnes with a notional value of USD65.3m, while 119 lots of molybdenum have been traded, equivalent to 714 tonnes and USD27.6m.

Nine brands of cobalt and six brands of molybdenum have been registered with the exchange as good for delivery. At the start of business on 19 May, 76 tonnes of cobalt were on warrant and 56 tonnes of molybdenum (contained in 90 tonnes of roasted molybdenum concentrates).

Chris Evans, head of business development at the LME, says: “Initial trading is encouraging and suggests the market is positively engaging with the new contracts. The benefits of LME cobalt and molybdenum are a regulated market, an accurate reference price that reflects real supply and demand and the opportunity for market participants to manage their risk through hedging.”

Cobalt has many applications such as the production of catalysts, batteries, chemicals, alloys and dyes. Molybdenum is widely used as an alloy agent in steel and stainless steel.

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