Can iron ore stem the fall?

Iron ore has fallen again to a new low, dropping to another new low.

The spot price for the Northern China 62% import price dropped 2.4% to US$40.60 a tonne.

The price is now less than half the average price of US$97 per tonne at which it sat last year.

Many are wondering where the new floor will be for iron ore, as it continues to defy expectation and spiral downwards.

Outside of Chinese markets, the situation is even worse.

The SGX AsiaClear future contract price for January slumped to US$39.67 a tonne, and marks a return to prices not seen since before the Global Financial Crisis, in 2007.

Some miners have already attempted to address the current oversupply affecting the market, with Vale already announcing a reduction in its production rates.

The miner cut back its forecast for next year to address ongoing volatility in the market, oversupply and low margins, and as a reaction to the Samarco mine spill,

However Rio Tinto and BHP are still going ahead with their planned increase, and are nearing their targets of 360 million tonnes and 290 million tonnes of iron ore respectively.

The seemingly constantly delayed first shipments from Roy Hill are also slated to bring additional supply online, increasing tonnages in an already flooded market and potentially driving the price down further.

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