Iron ore price sinks again

The price of iron ore hit a new five-year low overnight.

Benchmark iron ore for immediate delivery to the port of Tianjin in China last traded at $US62.80 a tonne, down from its previous close of $US63.30 a tonne.

This is the lowest price the commodity has fetched since mid-2009.

It has now lost 11 per cent of its value since January 1 after suffering a 47 per cent decline in 2014.

Iron ore stocks were hammered on the ASX yesterday, and all eyes will be focused on how the market reacts to news of this fresh low today.

Making matters worse for the sector are predictions by analysts at Citic who say the price could drop as low as $US58 a tonne for 2015.

Most miners operating in Australia would be unprofitable at this level.

The price glut has already seen a host of jobs cut and mine closures, and Citic’s Ivan Szpakowski said he expects more operations to shut up shop by the end of 2015.

The federal budget is also set to suffer as a result of the price glut.

Australia's Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE) says that while Australia will export a record 747 million tonnes of iron ore in 2014-15, its export value will decrease 24 per cent to $57 billion.

BREE cut its iron ore p rice forecast for 2015 to $US63 a tonne.

The true damage the iron ore price is exacting should be revealed later this week when FMG and BC Iron publish their December quarter production figures.

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