Taiwan’s China Steel Corporation (CSC) raised finished steel prices for domestic February shipments by TWD2,200-3,000/mt ($79-107/mt) or around 9.5pc from early January prices amid high raw material prices and an uptrend in global steel prices. Steel prices have trended up in the last eight months as the global economies slowly recovered from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic amid a steady rise in iron ore and coal prices. CSC’s production cost has jumped up by $60-65/mt from a month ago, stated the company in a release announcing a price hike on Jan 13.
The steelmaker increased prices for February sales by TWD2,200/mt for hot-rolled steel, hot-rolled plates and electro-galvanized sheets, while it hiked cold-rolled steel prices by TWD2,500/mt and electrical sheets by TWD3,000/mt.
|CSC’s domestic sales prices for Feb|
|Products||Change from Jan|
Strong economic outlook
The purchasing managers’ indices (PMI) for the world’s major economies, such as Europe, the US and China, showed expansion since the second half of 2020. Taiwan’s PMI in December was 61.3 far better than that of other major economies. Major countries recorded industrial recovery leading to a large increase in steel consumption. While amid a tight supply situation, Japanese steel mills have even announced the suspension of January circulation steel orders.
High global Iron ore and HRC prices
Raw material costs remained high globally as iron ore demand recovered significantly. Along with this supply concerns from the Brazil and Australia mines, cold weather and new COVID-19 restrictions pushed global iron ore prices to jumped above $170/mt cfr China on Monday. Iron ore prices are up by around 80pc from the prior year, reaching a decade high.
China’s Baowu steel raised HRC prices successively for January and February shipments by a total of CNY750/mt ($116/mt). Electromagnetic steel plate prices are up by CNY2,300/mt ($353/mt) reflecting a sharp rise in demand from the automobile and electric vehicles sectors. Vietnam’s Hejing Steel hiked prices by $160/mt for February and March deliveries.
CSC’s domestic steel prices are still behind the international market as the company focused on building downstream growth momentum amid an overheated global trend.