The strong demand still fueling solar wafer price improvement

Solar panel price declines marginally this week, mainly affected by solar panel price drop in the US. Without the further RMB depreciation against USD, solar panel price in China becomes stable in USD term. On the other hand, since some Chinese solar panel makers have been doing the price competition in efforts to gain more market share in the U.S. market, solar panel price in the U.S. is being pressured. Nevertheless, solar panel prices in Europe and Japan remain flat, as the demand stay constantly, as Chinese solar panel manufacturers in these regions are still not able to do the price competition under the solar cell cost rising. In India and the emerging countries, solar panel price stays stable, as the demand has maintained solid. As the result, overall solar panel price drops slightly as pressured by the strategic price competition in the U.S. market.



Solar panel price declines marginally this week, mainly affected by solar panel price drop in the US. Without the further RMB depreciation against USD, solar panel price in China becomes stable in USD term. On the other hand, since some Chinese solar panel makers have been doing the price competition in efforts to gain more market share in the U.S. market, solar panel price in the U.S. is being pressured. Nevertheless, solar panel prices in Europe and Japan remain flat, as the demand stay constantly, as Chinese solar panel manufacturers in these regions are still not able to do the price competition under the solar cell cost rising. In India and the emerging countries, solar panel price stays stable, as the demand has maintained solid. As the result, overall solar panel price drops slightly as pressured by the strategic price competition in the U.S. market.

Multi-crystalline cell price remains flat this week, as solar cell makers have been taking good profits since 4Q15. Although tight supply situation sustains, major Chinese solar panel makers are difficult to accept further cell price hike, as their profits is getting worst. Moreover, as the depreciation of RMB has temporarily relieved, Chinese multi-crystalline cell price stabilizes in USD term. Although the momentum for price hike is suppressed by solar module makers, solar cell makers are still able to keep a satisfied profit. With the reasonable profits, major solar cell makers have not any serious intention to further raise the price quote. As a result, the price of multi-crystalline cell stays clam. As for mono-crystalline cell, the price stays stable this week. Because the depreciation of RMB has been ceased recently, Chinese mono-crystalline cell price remains clam in USD term. The chances for further price hike in Chinese market are unlikely, because the past RMB depreciation made Chinese solar module makers have less purchasing power, even although the order visibility and demand remains high. On overseas market, the prices of mono-crystalline cell stay stable this week. As a result, overall mono-crystalline cell price stays flat this week, as the prices inside and outside China stand still.

Multi-crystalline wafer prices are still increasing incrementally, but the margin of improvement is greatly limited. Although market demand remains solid and order visibility is stable, the market activity is more subdued due to the impending Chinese New Year holidays. Most buyers have already secured enough wafers for the holiday period, and are waiting for the post-holiday return, when the demand will be less urgent, to negotiate further prices. Hence, the previous momentum for a bullish price hike is now receding. Furthermore, as multi-crystalline wafer prices are now equal to or even higher than mono-crystalline wafer prices, it is becoming further difficult for multi-crystalline wafer producers to increase their prices. Mono-crystalline wafer prices fall incrementally this week, due to the weak demand in markets outside China forcing suppliers to offer some mild price reduction. Meanwhile, mono-crystalline wafer prices inside China are overall stable, thanks to the pricing strategy of market leader Longi. The slight decrease is starting to push mono-crystalline wafer prices below average multi-crystalline wafer prices, which further limits the scope of increase for the latter.

Poly-silicon prices are dropping slightly this week, mainly driven down by spot prices outside China. As the demand remains flat, the level of oversupply continues to be severe. With major mono--crystalline manufacturers showing no intention to reduce their production volume, and with the Chinese trade barriers still solidly in place, the markets outside China continues to be flooded with large volumes of poly-silicon sold at record-low prices, which in turn influences the prices inside China. Although many manufacturers struggle to strengthen their price quote, the attempts are not successful, due to the constant oversupply. The Chinese market is seeing some mild increase in demand due to some wafer producers acquiring stock for the holiday period, but the surge is not strong enough to reverse the price trend.

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