PVinsights: Solar prices are on the brink of plunge amid sign of dimmed demand

Polysilicon prices in China stagnate this week as the suppliers and the buyers hit a stalemate. As Chinese suppliers consider that current demand is solid, they still intend to boost the prices even though the attempts have not yet succeeded. Also, as expected ramp-up by new entrants are deferred and yearly maintenance are scheduled by some suppliers, the restraint in supply have strengthened suppliers attitude to hold the prices at current level. On the other hand, buyers are asking for price discounts as facing huge pressures from the downstream since the demand is not as robust. Therefore, the stalemate has kept the prices in China immobile this week. On the other hand, polysilicon prices slides on oversupply and the recovery seems impossible since the utilization rates of downstream wafer suppliers remain low in overseas market.

Polysilicon prices in China stagnate this week as the suppliers and the buyers hit a stalemate. As Chinese suppliers consider that current demand is solid, they still intend to boost the prices even though the attempts have not yet succeeded. Also, as expected ramp-up by new entrants are deferred and yearly maintenance are scheduled by some suppliers, the restraint in supply have strengthened suppliers attitude to hold the prices at current level. On the other hand, buyers are asking for price discounts as facing huge pressures from the downstream since the demand is not as robust. Therefore, the stalemate has kept the prices in China immobile this week. On the other hand, polysilicon prices slides on oversupply and the recovery seems impossible since the utilization rates of downstream wafer suppliers remain low in overseas market.


Multi-crystalline wafer prices stay unchanged this week with losing momentum for price upturn. As pressures from downstream cell and module sectors extend, the buyers could no longer accept further price hikes as they perceive the demand is about to weaken. The major buyers have successfully defended the price hike, leaving the prices mostly stayed flattened. Besides, the recent drop of mono-crystalline wafer prices also pushes multi-crystalline wafer suppliers to accelerate transition from slurry saw to diamond-wired one, and more 1st tiers suppliers are providing more incentives to do such shift in order to protect the market share of multi-crystalline products. As for mono-crystalline wafers, the prices slump modestly this week. Although the 1st tier mono-wafer suppliers hold off price adjustments, other 2nd and 3rd tier suppliers constantly lower their prices amid weakening demand in the downstream, resulting consecutive decline in mono-crystalline wafer prices this week.

The overall prices of multi-crystalline fall slightly this week due to minor drop leads by Chinese 2nd and 3rd tier suppliers. As speculation of waning demand in second half of July continues to rise, the buyers become more conservative on the pricing as well as the procurement volumes. The pressure has firstly hit the 2nd and 3rd tier Chinese solar cell suppliers who eventually adopt lower prices in order to secure orders. Yet, the correction was minor since the demand in the current are still sustainable, but the concerns of dimmed demand has deepened continuously. Meanwhile, the multi-crystalline cell prices in overseas markets remain immobile this week. Due to lower utilization rates by overseas suppliers, the rein in production output could still help suppliers to keep their prices in the moment. As the result, the scope of multi-crystalline cell price drop is limited this week. On the other hand, mono-crystalline cell prices suffer from heftier losses this week. As market fears over expanded production by solar cell suppliers on mono cells including mono perc run rampant, the pressures from increased price competition and the worsening sentiment have compounded by subdued demand, leading to the sharp tumble of mono-crystalline cell prices.

Multi- and mono-crystalline module prices continue to slide. In China, the prices are pressured by waning downstream demand, while the prices drop accelerates in India as project developers are looking for cheaper modules to compensate the increased GST. In EU and Japan, the module prices show little volatility due to thin trading in the summer season. In the U.S., although some projects are advanced, preventing from the possible loss triggered by the safeguard investigation result, procurement for new projects is still slow and only few deals have been settled. In other emerging countries, price competitions are intensifying, driven by the 2nd tier Chinese module suppliers.

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