Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg

Tin Market Gets Squeezed After Trader Amasses Dominant Position

One unidentified company held 50 percent to 79 percent of tin stockpiles and short-dated positions

Tin bears have found themselves at the mercy of one bull. 

While shorting the metal has been a popular trade this year, staying bearish got difficult this week as one company came to control more than 90 percent of stockpiles and short-dated positions in the market. At one point, short sellers had to pay the highest fees in at least 16 years in order to borrow the metal for one day and roll forward their bets. 

“Maybe someone is trying to put a bit of a squeeze on,” Herwig Schmidt, head of sales at Triland Metals Ltd. in London, said by phone. “Tin is the most prone to it. In the past, we had loads of attempts of real squeezes on tin. This can be made with less money than aluminum, copper or zinc.”

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