Views: 1 Author: Site Editor Publish Time: 2017-10-27 Origin: Site
Titanium prices opened the new year flat, much as they ended 2015, with market sources agreeing that prices are unlikely to show any movement within the next three months.
“Standard costs have not changed at all. If you book a really big job, maybe you can get concessions, but there aren’t many big jobs,” a Midwest distributor source said.
Pricing for most titanium products has not changed since August despite major consolidation announcements from large industry players and a strong aerospace industry.
Prices have managed to hold their ground as the relative strength of the aerospace industry has counterbalanced pressure from a weak industrial sector.
“I think there’s still enough demand from aerospace that it offsets oil and gas demand, which is a nice balance,” a Northeast distributor source said.
Potentially large industrial projects like desalination plants, even if they do come to fruition, often spur buying from large suppliers and might not change prices for smaller service centers, the Midwest distributor said.
However, most big projects in the industrial sector involve oil and gas and are being shelved for the time being, other market sources noted.
Meanwhile, the titanium supply is still fairly stable, and conservative purchasing strategies have eliminated panic buying, keeping markets flat, the Midwest distributor added.
While titanium did not exactly soar through the end of 2015 – as pricing remained relatively flat despite strong market demand – there is hope that 2016 will fare slightly better.
But real growth in the market is not expected until at least 2017 when the first of announced production rate increases by aircraft original equipment manufacturers like Boeing and Airbus SAS kick in.
“It’s getting better but until we hit 2017, 2018 and 2019, that’s really where the growth could be,” said Olin.
Titanium prices have remained flat for most of the year although market players said demand is strong.
Titanium has had banner year in the news, but not so much for demand or any other breakthrough, rather for the big ticket mergers that were announced. Aerospace represents the largest end-market for titanium with about half of all demand going into the sector.
The use of titanium for aircrafts is increasing over aluminum or other specialty alloys as more aircraft manufacturers are turning to composites for the structure of the airplane as well as in the next generation jet engines.