Iron Ore Price Forecast For 2019

While much attention has been paid to iron ore’s volatility in the past few months, few mainstream media outlets have paid attention to forecasts for the next year.

Forecasting is tricky, but there are a few factors worth paying attention to.

Greg Canavan has recently been looking at the immediate future of iron ore here.

But with longer term predictions, it’s always a case of supply and demand.

It could also provide an insight as to when to sell major mining stocks like BHP Billiton Ltd [ASX:BHP] and Rio Tinto Ltd [ASX:RIO].

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China’s demand for iron ore

Firstly, as iron ore is tied very closely with steel production, it tends to trend closely with global economic growth, in particular China’s.

China consumes a lot of iron ore because it produces 50.3% of the world’s steel.

So Chinese economic growth is a major factor.

Current IMF projections of Chinese economic growth for 2019 have it at 6.3%.

Growth is projected to slow moderately over the coming five years as China modernises its economy.

This is likely to create downward pressure on iron ore prices as China’s demand for iron ore decreases.

Short-, medium- and long-term future of iron ore

On the supply side of the equation, Vale, a Brazilian multinational mining company, has been ramping up production in its local market. It is also increasingly going for higher purity iron ore production.

Brazilian iron ore production increased 5% last year, and 4% this year.

With China seeking higher purity iron ore to combat pollution fears, Vale could benefit.

Ultimately, it may be a slowdown in global growth as a result of the US-China trade war that could create the immediate difficulties for iron ore prices.

Mid-future, i.e. over the next 12 months, there is the very real prospect of a global recession which Markets & Money’s Vern Gowdie excellently describes here.

Longer term, Australia’s Department of Industry is saying that 2020 could bring a drop of 12% from the price we have seen over the last six months.

With these factors in mind, investors may consider locking in price gains on big name mining stocks soon.

At the same time, mining stocks that do not rely on iron ore as a main source of revenue could be worth a look.

Markets and Money’s coverage of iron ore is extensive.

Lachlann Tierney has covered the prospects of a Chinese stimulus package, provided a mid-term forecast and looked at the impacts of the trade war on iron ore prices.


Ryan Clarkson-Ledward,
Markets & Money

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Ryan Clarkson-Ledward is a junior analyst for Markets & Money. Ryan has degrees in both communication and international business. His priority is bringing you the latest price updates on stocks through ASX updates, as well as supporting Sam Volkering with background research. As part of the team at Markets & Money his aim is to provide unbiased and relevant news for readers. Ryan’s work with Sam is designed to provide research that complements Sam’s analysis for small-cap and technology stocks. Together, their objective is to break through all the jargon and give you the hard facts to inform your investment decision-making. Ryan writes for:

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