Iron ore is ripping higher, but there's signs the bullish price action may soon come to an end

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Iron ore prices continue to rip higher.

According to Metal Bulletin, the spot price for benchmark 62% fines jumped by a further 1.85% to $92.61 a tonne on Thursday, extending its rally over the past two sessions to 5.1%.

Year to date, it has rallied 17.4%, a fair effort coming on top of the 80%-plus gains recorded in 2016.

The gains were even larger for lower grade ores with the price for 58% fines adding 1.93% to $63.81 a tonne.

The rally came despite the news that Chinese domestic iron ore output lifted to 184.16 million tonnes in the first two months of the year, according to China’s National Bureau of Statistics, up 15.3% on the same period a year earlier.

It also bucked renewed weakness in spot and futures rebar prices on Thursday, seemingly following the strong lead provided by Dalian iron ore futures earlier in the session.

The divergence between the two — somewhat of an anomaly — suggests the decision from the Dalian Exchange to temporarily cut trading fees for iron ore futures contracts earlier this week may been a factor.

However, there are signs the effect from that decision is not also starting to wane.

Most Chinese commodity futures weakened overnight, including for iron ore.

The most actively traded May 2017 iron ore future slipped 0.69%, finishing the session at 716 yuan. That was also well below the intraday high of 735 yuan struck during Thursday’s day session.

Rebar futures on the Shanghai Commodities Exchange also weakened, falling 0.83% to 3,591 yuan.

SHFE Copper ¥47,950 , -0.06%
SHFE Aluminium ¥13,875 , 0.22%
SHFE Zinc ¥23,265 , 0.58%
SHFE Nickel ¥84,640 , -0.87%
SHFE Rebar ¥3,591 , -0.83%
DCE Iron Ore ¥716.00 , -0.69%
DCE Coking Coal ¥1,293.00 , -0.19%
DCE Coke ¥1,871.50 , 0.54%

Trade in Chinese commodity futures will resume at midday AEDT.

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