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Australasia

New Zealand’s scrap metal market has returned from the summer break but has yet to regain its full momentum. Local metal consumers have recommenced operations too and are reporting improved conditions. Traditional offshore markets also remain an option. Shipping prices seem to have increased in the wake of Red Sea issues, which is highly frustrating as this appears to be affecting cargo not going near that region.

The new coalition government’s ambitious plan for its first 100 days in office is coming to fruition, with a number of repeals and changes to policies which had been put in place over the past several years. So far, overall business sentiment seems supportive of these moves by the new government.

While headline inflation is falling quicker than forecast, this appears to be more to do with cheaper imported goods rather than less inflationary pressure within the economy. Tentatively, the official cash rate will now be held until some time in 2025.

The Australian economy is continuing to outperform its New Zealand counterpart, with merchants and consumers also reporting improved trading conditions. Alcoa has announced that it is to close the Kwinana Alumina Refinery in Western Australia, which will be a huge loss to the region.