Polysilicon quotations had slightly fluctuated this week, and a depleting trend is starting to manifest in the polysilicon market. Overall quotations of the wafer market have deteriorated significantly after successive price reductions were carried out by first-tier wafer businesses in the downstream sector. This led to calls for lower prices in the polysilicon segment. The polysilicon sector is now facing a small level of inventory pressure, and suppliers are reluctant to lower prices due to a largely balanced demand and supply market status, with apparent bargaining between upstream and downstream sectors. Although the polysilicon market has yet to exhibit prominent price reduction, the concluded prices for partial long-term orders have been sizably loosened at a decrement of RMB 2-5/kg due to the added pressure from regular clients. Overall polysilicon prices have marginally depleted, where mono polysilicon is now sitting at RMB 261/kg, and roughly US$36.1/kg for recent overseas price due to a simultaneous decrease that is triggered by the recent fluctuation in domestic wafer quotations.
An observation on the production, operation, and shipment status of the domestic polysilicon sector indicates that one additional business has initiated operation in December, which is Xinjiang Daqo New Energy and its polysilicon project at an annual production of 35K tons, while Tongwei’s 50K tons production in Yunnan is also expected to commence at the end of the year. Coupled with the two projects previously initiated by GCL-Poly and Tongwei in Sichuan, the total new polysilicon capacity will arrive at 155K tons. New projects are currently climbing in capacity, and the fewer production of polysilicon this year is exerting limited effect to polysilicon prices within the short term.
Wafer quotations continued to drop this week, where mono and multi-Si wafers had declined at the same time. The reduction of wafer quotations for December implemented by the two leading wafer businesses is followed by other wafer businesses at an even more apparent degree, where other second and third-tier businesses are comparatively chaotic in quotations. The average prices for G1, M6, and G12 have now dropped to RMB 5.13/pc, RMB 5.25/pc, and RMB 8.55/pc respectively. A small number of wafer businesses, under the sentiment of price decrement, have lowered their M6 mono-Si wafer quotations to below RMB 5/pc in order to facilitate shipment, though the actual volume of concluded transactions remains on the inferior end.
An observation on the production, operation, and shipment status of the domestic wafer sector indicates that each segment is pressured to carry out inventory reduction through price decrement under the existing high prices of the industry chain, as well as the weakening end demand for the short term. The continuous adjustment of wafer quotations is followed by marginal loosening in upstream quotations, with an insignificant level of actual concluded polysilicon transactions in the market, which denotes that the attitude in price suppression remains relatively robust in the wafer market, as well as reflects the pressure of the wafer segment in eliminating inventory due to the wait-and-see approach from the downstream sector. Wafer quotations are expected to remain turbulent within the short term.
Cell quotations had slightly depleted this week with the market currently adopting a wait-and-see attitude. Mono and multi-Si cell quotations have been successively dropping after the continuous deterioration of wafer quotations from leading businesses, where the overall sluggish market demand in December, together with the stronger sentiment of riding the fence in the market, have yielded a comparatively lower transaction volume. Partial businesses have yet to reduce their prices under such tendency, which pushed the mainstream prices of the mono-Si G1 and M6 cells to RMB 1.13/W and RMB 1.06/W, while M10 and G12 mono-Si cells are both sitting at RMB 1.12/W in mainstream price. Despite having benefitted various downstream segments, especially with end demand, the reduction of wafer prices requires a certain period of time for transmittance, and each segment will remain cautious about procurement before the overall prices are stabilized.
The mainstream prices for multi-Si cells in the domestic and overseas markets have dropped to RMB 0.83/W and US$0.117/W respectively due to the continuously diminishing market supply under unstable quotations that are yielded by a weaker demand on the whole.
Module prices had somewhat fluctuated this week, with partial products carrying on with a reduction in quotations. Despite the upstream sector’s constant release of signals in price decrement, the significant reduction of module quotations last week has yet to stimulate end demand by a sizable margin. In terms of prices, 166mm, 182mm, and 210mm modules are now sitting at RMB 1.95/W, RMB 1.96/W, and RMB 1.98/W in respective mainstream quotation. Aside from centralized orders and smooth shipment from a partial number of first-tier businesses, other second and third-tier businesses remain on fewer orders, and a number of them are repeatedly compromising on negotiation for the purpose of seizing orders, which makes it difficult for overall market quotations to stay robust. As for overseas markets, certain regions have decelerated the pace of inventory pull as the end of the year approaches, and are now further adhering to a wait-and-see approach.
Glass quotations had slightly dropped this week, where 3.2mm and 2.0mm PV glasses are now sitting at RMB 25-27/㎡ and roughly RMB 19-22/㎡ respectively. The recently impeded shipment of modules has led to a constantly rising level of glass inventory in the market, and a few businesses are weakening in bargaining power under pressure.
（Image：KNOW MALTA by Peter Grima via Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0）