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Positive Chinese car sales data likely to lift Palladium prices

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SHANGHAI (Scrap Register): Chinese car-sales data bode well for palladium, said Commerzbank. The metal is used for catalytic converters in gasoline-powered cars, which make up the bulk of the Chinese market.

Analysts cited a report from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers showing that China sold fewer cars in December than in the same period a year ago – around 2.65 million – yet the December figure was the highest of 2017.

For last year as a whole, 24.74 million cars were sold, 1.8% up year-on-year. As such, car sales have risen for at least 12 years in a row…even though dynamism cooled noticeably last year.

In absolute terms, very large numbers of cars were sold in November and December because China completely reversed the tax breaks for buying cars with smaller engines as of 1 January 2018.

The CAAM expects an increase in sales of around 3% in 2018. The good Chinese car sales provide a retrospective explanation for last year’s rise in the palladium price and are also likely to support the price this year.

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