Merafe Resources‚ the partner in Glencore’s South African chrome and ferrochrome operations, said on Friday the European benchmark price for ferrochrome for the third quarter of this year had decreased 28.6% from the previous quarter. The company advised shareholders in a note that the price had been set at $1.10 per pound, from $1.54 in the second quarter. Though down from the previous quarter, the price was 12% higher than the 98c in the third quarter of 2016, sending Merafe’s share price up 0.85% to R1.18. In 2016, ferrochrome prices were weak, averaging 95.5c per pound‚ with the price falling as low as 82c in the second quarter of the year. SA is the world’s largest producer of ferrochrome, overtaking production in China in 2015. Merafe said in its integrated annual report for the year ended December 2016 there was a 7% net lower price for ferrochrome during the financial year, which was offset by an 18% increase in sales, a weaker rand and a 38% increase in chrome or sales.

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