Indian mills slowed imported scrap purchases this week ahead of the Diwali festival from November 14-17. Prices are still firm and have reached a 17-month peak. Raw material prices, including that of domestic scrap and Sponge iron, have been on an uptrend lately amid tight supply
The Davis Index for containerized shredded on Tuesday settled at $330.71/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, up by $0.28/mt from Monday. A few alloy makers bought shredded containers at $330-331/mt cfr Nhava Sheva and a few trades reported at prices equivalent to $335/mt cfr Chennai and Vizag.
Demand from secondary steel mills remains weak. Offers on Tuesday were in the range of $332-335/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, with indications of a further rise by $10-15/mt after the Diwali festival from Nov 14-16. A few suppliers have already started raising offers to $337-340/mt cfr Nhava Sheva for shredded.
In Turkey, the daily Davis Index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) was at $296.5/mt cfr on Monday, down by $0.12/mt. After several scrap deals last week in the Turkey bulk market, buyers intend to shift their focus on rebar sales. The impact of Joe Biden, the Democratic candidate inching close to becoming the President of the USA on the markets remains to be seen. Further, the stock markets have also gained amid the COVID-19 vaccine making it through the phase-3 trials.
Traders from the UAE raised HMS offers by $5/mt from Friday, but prices have stayed flat since Monday with the Davis Index for UAE-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20), Tuesday, settling at $320/mt cfr Nhava Sheva. Offers for containerized #1 HMS without the cast and galvanized iron from Dubai were at prices above $320-325/mt cfr Nhava Sheva on Tuesday. A few buyers sought HMS 1&2 (80:20) at $310-315/mt cfr Nhava Sheva as domestic billet prices came under pressure, losing Rs300-400/mt in the last two days.
The Davis Index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) was at $321.21/mt cfr Nhava Sheva on Tuesday, unchanged from Monday. Suppliers are offering bulk cargoes of HMS 1&2 (80:20) at $325-330/mt cfr Kandla, but buyers showed limited interest at these price levels. Bulk demand could recover for January shipments post the Diwali festival, driving prices up to $350/mt cfr Nhava Sheva.
Strengthening Chinese markets pushed domestic billet prices to reach an 18-month high in the domestic market. On Tuesday, Chinese producers offered domestic billet at CNY3580/mt ex-Tangshan, up by CNY10/mt. The rise is likely to instill positive sentiment in the market. Indian billet makers are targeting levels of $450/mt fob with no deals to report at those levels.
Limited container availability caused by a mismatch between imports and exports has pushed freight prices up for a few routes in South Asia. Thus, the container availability index has hit a record low on the US and China routes.
The Davis Index for containerized shredded, Tuesday, settled at $333.11/mt cfr India subcontinent, up by $0.89/mt from Monday. The Davis Index for containerized US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) was at $322.31/mt cfr India subcontinent, up by $0.38/mt from Tuesday.