The graphite electrode market in 2022 experienced a rise from January to May, a sideways consolidation in June, and successive declines from July to September. Since the second half of the year, the prices of graphite electrode products have been significantly lower than the raw material costs, and electrode enterprises are producing at a loss.
The market price reduction amounted to 23.73% in two months.
Although the price of graphite electrode has been reduced significantly, the cost side remains high. The raw material needle coke market for ultra-high power electrodes kept a slow downward rhythm from July to September, so the graphite electrode production started to enter a loss period in July.
Under the inverted profit, the graphite electrode market operating rate declined all the way down. The electrode market operating rate in August at around 35% level, down 6% MoM and 27% YoY. Graphite electrode market enters a situation where supply and demand are both light. A few head enterprises such as Fangda, Henan Pingmei, Jilin carbon, Fushun, Basan graphite, etc. adhere to the production. Most small enterprises have low production, switching to the production of crucibles or graphite plates for negative electrode materials, graphitization processing, etc.
Graphite electrodes downstream mainly for electric arc furnace steelmaking. Real estate, infrastructure traditional peak season is approaching. Steel mills are gradually increasing the number of mills resuming production in September. In particular, more manufacturers in the early stage of continuous maintenance have resumed production. Independent electric arc furnace plant capacity utilization and operating rate may show a slight increase in the trend. The arrival of traditional consumption season will have a certain positive impact on the graphite electrode market. The transaction price of individual manufacturers has shown a slight recovery, so in September and October, Graphite electrode market will have some rebound performance.