World Bureau of Metal Statistics recently announced that the lead market recorded a deficit of 32 kt in January to September 2020 which follows a deficit of 278 kt recorded in the whole of 2019. Total stocks at the end of September were 45 kt higher than at the end of 2019. No allowance is made in the consumption calculation for unreported stock changes. Demand is measured on an apparent basis and it is likely that the full effects of national lockdowns have not been fully reflected in the trade statistics.
World refined production during January to September 2020 from both primary and secondary sources was 9582 kt which was 3.5 per cent higher than in the comparable months of 2019. Chinese apparent demand was estimated at 4514 kt which was 251 kt higher than the comparable period in 2019 and represented about 47 per cent of the global total. For the USA, apparent demand has decreased by 91 kt for January to September 2020 compared to the same months of 2019.
In September 2020, refined lead production was 1146.4 kt and demand was 1146.5 kt.