A major Chinese commodities exchange took further steps to calm volatile markets on Wednesday, hiking transaction fees and widening trade limits in a move that could make exiting futures contracts more orderly. Iron ore and steel futures fell again in reaction to higher trading costs, brought in to deter speculative investors believed to be behind last week's spike in prices and volumes that had stoked fears of a destabilizing crash.
China's commodity exchanges are trying to cool their markets as benchmarks rallied rapidly this week, with turnover of a single rebar contract on Thursday worth nearly 50% more than the total value traded on the Shanghai stock exchange.
The three producers collectively control about 60% of global exports and have been pumping billions of dollars into expanding output, squeezing higher-cost producers in an already over-supplied market. Oil slumped almost 50% last year, the most since the 2008 financial crisis, amid a supply glut, mirroring a 47% collapse in iron ore.