The Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Rare-earth (Group) Hi-tech Co., Ltd, China’s largest rare earths producer, announced on Dec. 25 that it will continue to halt some of its production for a third month to help stabilise tumbling prices.

It will maintain its suspension of rare earth roasting and smelting operations, which began on Oct. 23, for another month.
The burst of a speculative bubble in China’s rare earths industry and the softening economy has led to prices plunging for rare earths, a group of 17 metals used in products ranging from smartphones to hybrid cars and wind turbines. The price of praseodymium-neodymium oxide, primarily used to make ceramics and magnetic materials, has slid to around RMB 300000/t (US$47088) down 78% from RMB 1.4M/t ($220000/t) at the highest point in 2011.

Source: China Metals e-mail