Tag Archives: Steel Price News

PROCUREMENT ACTIVITY REMAINS UNSETTLED IN EMERGING STEEL MARKETS

According to MEPS, Russian trading houses expressed reservations over the necessity of the latest round of price hikes. The majority stress that the initiative is unsustainable and does not reflect real demand. End-users are exhibiting little urgency to purchase material, even with discounts granted.

The Indian steel market has been unsettled by pre-budget expectations, weak market fundamentals and volatile raw material costs. Attention is being paid to the negotiation of coking coal and iron ore contracts.

The outlook for the Ukrainian market is unchanged. Long product steel sales fell and are unlikely to recover until the construction season restarts. Meanwhile, steel production has been disrupted due to raw material shortages.

The business climate remained unsettled in Turkey, this month. Local service centres plan to keep stocks low in the near term and are purchasing cautiously. Construction demand is lower than anticipated. Flat product buyers are reluctant to take positions, amid changeable domestic and foreign quotations.

Price volatility unsettled buying activity in the United Arab Emirates, this month. Local traders are extremely reluctant to purchase material in, what they deem as, precarious trading conditions. Several firms plan to observe the global reaction to the re-opening of the Chinese market. In early trading, Emirati rolling mills opted to lower their selling figures.

Source: MEPS – Developing Markets Steel Review – February Edition

MEPS GLOBAL STEEL PRICE RISES AGAIN IN JUNE

The MEPS world all products composite steel price increased in June by 0.6 percent – the sixth consecutive monthly rise. However, amid a modest global demand outlook, MEPS predicts that steel prices are now very close to their peak for the current cycle.

The North American average price advanced by 5.8 percent in June as trade petitions and supply shortages continued to put upward pressure on domestic selling figures. From MEPS research, this month, the consensus view from steel industry participants is that selling figures are likely to stabilise, at best, in the near term. Purchasing activity, in fact, is expected to soften in the second half of the year.

In June, both Asian and European selling values fell, when measured in US dollar values, by 3.4 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively, month-on-month.

In China, steel prices are likely to come under negative pressure in the second half of the year. The steel sector has been repeatedly urged to reduce excess manufacturing capacity. However, we detect little evidence to suggest that significant production cuts are being made.

In fact, in response to domestic price surges at the start of the year, local mills ramped up output by starting up idled facilities. This is borne out from information issued by the China Iron and Steel Association that domestic daily steel output in mid-May rose to its highest level since June 2015.

As a consequence, more steel will be made available for export. This is likely to put downward pressure on steel selling figures around the world as low-priced exports from China are likely to become available in global markets.

Southeast Asia remains one of the few regions of the world in which steel demand exceeds domestic supply. This makes this area a prime target for low-cost Chinese imports and the prospect of declining selling values.

With the likelihood of increased global supply of steel from the mills and expanding availability, a continuation of the steel price revival is limited.

Source: MEPS International Steel Review – June 2016 Issue

NORDIC STEEL MARKET ROUNDUP FROM MEPS

According to MEPS, domestic prices across the Nordic region are near a peak. Hot rolled coil sellers expect to be busy until the summer vacation begins.

Hot rolled plate selling figures rose as delivery lead times extended and supply tightened. Furthermore, imports became scarcer and more expensive.

Material availability of cold rolled coil became more restricted. Some European producers state that their rolling schedules are full throughout the third trimester. This helped selling figures to rise but further increases are unlikely, in the short term.

Galvanised coil transaction values continued to climb, month-on-month. Sales to the automotive sector are steady and supply is quite tight. Buyers are considering placing orders from Asian mills but such material would not arrive until September or October.

Drawing quality wire rod prices rose again, month-on-month. However, demand is now calmer and the price trend is expected to flatten out.

Delivery lead times for medium sections and beams are stretching. This helped European mills to secure advances in prices. Demand from the construction sector is strong. Limited availability was exacerbated by speculative buying while prices were climbing.

Rebar selling figures are believed to have peaked. Difficulty in sourcing material has eased a little. Prices are likely to slide in the near future in response to lower scrap costs.

Delivery lead times for merchant bar are very short. Selling figures are quite stable but some regional producers have already conceded small discounts.

Source: European Steel Review Supplement – June Edition

BRIC STEEL PRICES INCREASE IN MARCH

BRIC steel prices may have reached their lowest point after rebounding slightly, in March.

In this month’s issue of the Developing Markets’ Steel Review, MEPS reported that the BRIC average transaction price advanced across all the flat and long products surveyed.

Chinese steel mill price offers soared, in March, as buyers rebuilt inventories following the Lunar New Year holidays. Domestic crude steel production reduced by 4 percent, in February, compared with twelve months ago. Supply may decline further in the near term, as Chinese steel mills, in Tangshan, are reportedly being ordered to reduce pollution during an international flower show between April and October.

Brazilian flat product prices are steady, this month. Hot dipped galvanized transaction values increased marginally as imports fell, in February, by 49.5 percent, month-on-month. However, domestic long product figures continued to fall as market activity remained lacklustre.

In Russia, local producers secured higher transaction prices, in March. Cold rolled coil figures rose by 4 percent, month-on-month. Long product values advanced despite order intake remaining muted.

Following the introduction of the minimum import price framework, in India, we noted that buyers remain hesitant to place orders. However, flat and long product values increased marginally, in March.

Source: MEPS – Developing Markets Steel Review – March Edition

BRIC STEEL PRICES CONTINUE TO FALL IN DECEMBER

Steel prices in BRIC countries have slipped by an average of around 4 percent, in December.

In the recent issue of the Developing Markets’ Steel Review, MEPS reported that market activity across the developing world has softened across flat and long products areas. Amid a weak demand outlook, buyers have put further downward pressure on domestic selling prices as sales slow down, approaching year-end.

In Brazil, domestic producers have called for higher tariffs for imported material to protect market share. Meanwhile, reduced investment activity and sluggish domestic sales continued to dominate the Russian steel scene.

Chinese steel prices keep tumbling as falling raw material costs have enabled customers to secure reductions in their local market.

Low-priced imported material has put further downward pressure on South African domestic resale prices. Meanwhile, Mexican stockists have successfully secured lower transaction values following similar price reductions in the US.

Source: MEPS – Developing Markets Steel Review – December Edition

NORDIC STEEL MARKET ROUNDUP FROM MEPS

Domestic selling figures across the Nordic region remain under pressure, according to MEPS. Buyers of hot rolled coil are reluctant to hold stock because they feel unable to predict price trends, in the near future. Competition between suppliers is keeping profit margins tight.

Business activity for commodity plate is depressed. No change is foreseen in the immediate term. Buyers in Norway report that imports from China are being offered, although quality issues make them unsuitable for some end-users.

Cold rolled coil sales tonnages have been reasonable in September and October. However, prices are down. Meanwhile, demand for coated coil is satisfactory but buyers are wary of the likely effects of the Chinese slowdown and the Volkswagen car emission scandal.

Drawing quality wire rod transaction values have moved lower. Competition between local suppliers remains tough and has been exacerbated by increased imports from Russia.

Sales volumes of structural sections have dropped off since mid-September. Slower growth in China has had a knock-on effect, in Europe. Delivery lead times from regional mills are very short, at one or two weeks.

Rebar consumption is mediocre. Transaction values dropped in October. Subdued demand and further reductions in scrap costs are putting selling figures under pressure.
End-users of merchant bar are only buying for their immediate needs. Stockists are too reluctant to build inventory. Prices continue to fall.

Source: European Steel Review Supplement – October Edition