It has been slightly over a year since we last looked at the price of Neodymium (the rare Earth used in making powerful magnets) and at the time we were watching the price take a nose-dive as speculators went for profit-taking, US and Japanese facilities were being brought on-line, manufacturers source other materials and on the consumer end, many rare-earth based toys were strongly modified, or in the case of the most popular Rare-Earth Magnet Toy, BuckyBalls, outright destroyed by safety concerns.
This was the graph showing the price of Neodymium at the time:
In the span of a few months Neodymium drop to well below half its original price.
But how are things now? As mentioned there is not as much pressure on Neodymium’s price as there was before, but could it stabilize? Let’s have a look:
Oh dear. First of all you may note that our graph already starts well below the 150$/kg price (the price dropped from $150 to $100 between May and Dec 2012 (when we were not reporting on the price). It remains stable in Jan-Mar, similar to what it did in early 2012 but for longer. Then in early May things begin to crack again and the price drops. It is not as dramatic as the 2012 price halving, but still showing signs of not having bottomed out yet.
Despite the disappearance of Neodymium magnets from many toys, there are still many demands for them in consumer products: Tablets, Smartphones, headphones, hard drives and many other devices require the use of neodymium magnets.