Many Indonesian miners kept offer prices firm for thermal coal, willing to provide 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal at $40-41/t FOB on average.
"Miners in Indonesia are inclined to uphold prices," said an East China-based trader. "They generally offered Supramax 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal at $40/t FOB, above Chinese traders' bids; trades were heard concluded at $39.5/t FOB."
He added few deals were clinched on mid- and high-CV Indonesian material, which was in low availability and moderate price falls.
"Indonesian coal prices have picked up these days," said a Shanxi-based trader, without clarifying the underlying factors.
Some large miners would not sell Supramax 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal for late April loading below $42/t FOB, he noted, saying $41.5/t FOB for the same material on Panamax basis seemed too high to accept.
Prices of Indonesian coal sold to other countries were more favorable than to China, according to one Singapore-based trader. He said some Panamax Indonesian 4,200 Kcal/kg NAR was sold to Philippines buyer at $41.5/t FOB.
The high-sulfur 4,800 Kcal/kg NAR Indonesian cargoes were offered at $65/t and bid at below $60/t FOB, a so big spread that led to no deals, said the same trader.
One Shanghai-based trader, foreseeing no immediate supporting factors for April-delivery stocks at Indonesian miners, reported that selling and bidding interest was at $40/t and $38-39/t FOB for Supramax shipment of 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal, plus shipping rate of $7.3/t to South China.
Market prices remained in chaos, with bids sliding to $38-39/t FOB for Supramax cargoes of Indonesian 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal, compared with offers of $40-41/t FOB, a Fujian-based trader said.
China's domestic coal market may not bottom out soon, adding to difficulty for import trades, the trader pointed out.
Settling a vessel of late May-delivery Australian 5,500 Kcal/kg NAR coal at $79/t CFR South China, one southeastern China-based trader said prevailing bidding interest remained at $77-78/t.
He noted the Chinese seaborne import coal market saw a marked pickup in inquiries, mainly from some Chinese utilities with insufficient long-term contract domestic coal.
The Fenwei CCI Import 5500 index was assessed at $77.5/t on April 16, CFR southern China ports, unchanged from a day ago and down $2.3/t from a week earlier.
On the same day, the 4,700 Kcal/kg NAR import coal was assessed at $69/t, CFR southern China ports, stable from the day before and down $0.6/t week on week; imported 3,800 Kcal/kg NAR coal was assessed at $47.5/t, stable day on day and down $1.5/t week on week.
(Writing by Jessie Jia Editing by Harry Huo)
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