The statements made in the Forecast Report are based on our assessment of the overall economic conditions and the trend on the global copper market and Aurubis’ raw material and product markets, which are based on analyses by economic research institutes, organizations and industry associations as well as internal market analyses. The forecasts for the future business performance shown here are aligned with the BU targets as well as the opportunities and risks posed by the expected market conditions and competitive situations in the forecast period of one year. The opportunities and risks affecting the Aurubis Group are explained in detail in the Risk and Opportunity Report. Our forecasts are regularly adjusted. The following statements are based on our knowledge in December 2015.
The Aurubis Group started the new fiscal year 2015/16 in a global market environment that was on the decline overall:
The growth of the global economy is restrained. Risks persist, especially in the uncertain economic development in emerging markets, China in particular. While the economic performance in the US is satisfactory, the head of the US Federal Reserve gave the interest rate increase a real chance in 2015. The impact of these individual factors is still open. In the Eurozone, the mood among companies in October picked up slightly across the board, which was confirmed by the Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). It remains to be seen whether this will be reflected in concrete results beyond slight growth. The effects of the refugee influx in Europe is also unclear. Furthermore, the political conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East still haven’t been solved.
For the copper market and the other metal and raw material markets, it can be assumed that the global economy will remain on a growth course but that the uncertainties will continue. This will also influence the copper price trend.
There was no definitive price direction for copper in the first few weeks of the new fiscal year, with prices above US$ 5,000/t. The price fell below this mark starting in mid-November, however. The ongoing price development is uncertain. Price recoveries are possible if production disruptions arise, copper inventories decline further or copper demand turns out to be satisfactory after all.
Our sub-markets, e.g. the concentrate market, are showing positive tendencies at the start of the new fiscal year 2015/16. Many aspects also speak for moderate cathode demand overall and stable product business. The further development on the copper scrap markets, which are more oriented to the short term, can’t be forecast yet. The sulfuric acid market, which is similarly based on the short term and difficult to predict, is currently experiencing a surplus and therefore much lower prices.
The internal measures to improve earnings will likely have stronger impacts than in 2014/15; the maintenance shutdown in primary copper production at the Pirdop site will strain production.