Manganese Prices – Historical Graph

Real-time chart of historical daily manganese prices. The prices are shown in ton.
The current price is and is last updated on .
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  • The average price in the past 30 days is
  • The average price in the past 365 days is

Manganese Prices Explained

Manganese prices rest on downward levels as the commodity is caught up with the volatility of metal prices, the slowing Chinese economy, and its ailing steel industry. However, experts are hopeful as the manganese battery market shows signs of gaining applications in the car industry. 

Why are manganese prices fluctuating?

1. Weakening Demand

The slowing down of the global economy and deflation in the Chinese economy play an important role in decreasing manganese prices. Demand for manganese weakened recently despite lower shipping costs due to the declining demand from consumer industries such as steel and construction.

Property developers in China abandon their housing projects due to the companies’ growing debt and weak consumer spending on real estate. Overall, this downward pattern in manganese prices comes from the low production input of the steel industries.

2. Supply Issues

China is a major consumer and importer of manganese as its ore deposits are small in size and low in grade. Its big appetite is quite evident as its imports jumped to 12% in the first quarter of 2023, higher by 9.9% percent from the prior year. However, its ailing real estate investments slowed the country’s commodity purchase.

Conversely, it’s still a lucrative destination for suppliers, but, another competitor crowds the market. For instance, Brazil’s high-grade manganese shipment to China increased sharply this year. Thus, these piling options increase the diminishing manganese prices.

3. Growing Inventory

The total global reserves of manganese are around 1.7 billion metric tons. South Africa has the largest manganese reserves worldwide by far.

While the country battles internal chaos such as worker rallies and power shutdowns, it still manages to keep up its production quota. For example, the country has kept its increasing output by one-third since 2017. Thus, this steady influx puts downward pressure on manganese prices.

Which variables impact the price of manganese?

  • Weakening Demand
  • Supply Issues
  • Growing Inventory
  • Strong Dollar
  • Market Volatility
  • Geopolitical Factors

Where does manganese come from?

The production of manganese thread across various experiments and stages. First, Berlin glass technologist Johann Heinrich Pott investigated it chemically, instead, he discovered and made potassium permanganate (KMnO4), one of the strongest oxidizing agents known in 1740.

Second, Swedish chemist and mineralogist Johan Gottlieb Gahn successfully isolated manganese from other properties in 1744. Third, Ignatius Kaim, a student from Vienna, successfully produced manganese metal in 1771.

These are the 2 major steps in producing manganese:

Mining and Processing. The first step in the production process is to mine the manganese ore. Manganese ore is typically found in open pits or underground mines. Once the ore is mined, it is transported to a processing plant. At the processing plant, the ore is crushed and ground to a fine powder.

The ore powder is mixed with water and chemicals and fed into flotation cells. Flotation cells use air bubbles to separate the manganese minerals from the other minerals in the ore. The manganese minerals are then collected and dried. The dried manganese concentrate is then shipped to a smelter.

Smelting and Refining. At the smelter, the manganese concentrate is mixed with carbon and other materials. Next, the completed mixture is smelted in a blast furnace or electric furnace. Smelting is a technique of heating the manganese concentrate to a high temperature to remove the oxygen and other impurities.

The molten manganese is poured into molds to form blocks of metal. The manganese blocks are refined to remove any remaining impurities.

What are the uses of manganese?

Manganese is a transition metal with multiple industrial alloy uses, particularly in stainless steel.

1. Alloy Production – Manganese is the main component to produce important alloys and deoxidize steel and desulfurize. Additionally, as an alloy, it decreases the brittleness of steel and imparts strength.

2. Battery Manufacturing – It is used in dry cell batteries, specifically in electric vehicle battery manufacturing.

3. Chemical Applications – It is involved in many enzyme reactions such as processing cholesterol, carbohydrates, and protein.

4. Metallurgical Applications – Manganese is essential to steelmaking as it improves strength, workability, and resistance to wear. Additionally, manganese steel with 13% manganese is good for railway tracks, rifle barrels, safes, and prison bars.

5. Pigment Production – Manganese is used as a black-brown pigment in paint.

6. Glass and Ceramics – In the production of glass wares, manganese application is important to decolorize glass and prepare violet-colored glass.

7. Fertilizers – Along with nitrogen-based products, manganese is an essential nutrient for plants.

Overall, this multifaceted metal comes from South Africa, Gabon, Australia, China, and Ghana.

What is the future price of manganese?

Despite the present intense market competition and oversupply due to mining operation recovery, market analysts and investors are still positive about the manganese market’s profitability. The forecast showed that the manganese supply and demand will be slightly better than the previous year. 

However, much of this largely depends on the Chinese economic recovery and its global steel industry. 

Currently, only 1% of manganese supply directly goes to battery applications. However, battery makers experimented with new chemistry with higher manganese content.

For example, German chemical giant BASF introduced an NMC ( lithium manganese cobalt oxide ) battery that increased manganese to 70% and cut cobalt to less than 5%. Additionally, top Chinese battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology started adding manganese to their LFP ( Lithium iron phosphate ) batteries.

Furthermore, Volkswagen, Mercedes, Tesla, and General Motors announced intentions to use high-purity manganese in their cars.  Thus, this new formulation and application have the potential to fuel manganese prices in the future as countries are racing to create the most sustainable EV cars.

Overall, market analyst reports and estimates suggest that the price of manganese in 2030 will be between $600 and $700 per ton. This represents a potential increase of 10% to 20% from the current price.


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