Mar 28, 2022 07:32 AM

Cover Story: How Nickel Turmoil Exposed the LME and China’s Tsingshan

Nickel soared 250% to a record $101,365 a ton on the LME earlier March.
Nickel soared 250% to a record $101,365 a ton on the LME earlier March.

A month ago, nickel was just another sleepy commodity trading at low volumes on the London Metal Exchange (LME) for less than $25,000 a ton.

Then Russia, home to the world’s largest producer of the metal, invaded Ukraine, driving up the price of a material that’s mostly used in stainless steel but also has become increasingly important for electric vehicle batteries. The surging price caught China’s Fortune Global 500 steel and nickel giant Tsingshan Holding Group in a massive squeeze, forcing nickel up even more as Tsingshan bought furiously to cover short positions.

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