Hyundai Steel expects the steel demand to recover by Q4 2020 after COVID-19 related shutdowns affected the first half of the year.
Investment in the construction industry is expected to be level with last year in the fourth quarter, while the auto sector’s improvement witnessed in the third quarter might slide due to lower demand if COVID-19 infections start rising, resulting in a potential second wave of lockdowns.
China’s demand for steel is projected to return to pre-pandemic levels in Q4 2020 after the country reported a 5pc rise in real estate investments and a 1pc increase in machinery sales last quarter.
The Korean steel producer’s output in Q3 2020 fell to 4.5mn mt from 5.1mn mt in the same quarter last year and from 4.7mn mt in Q2 2020. Of the total production, Electric Arc Furnace output declined because of a mini mill’s shutdown and a slide in demand due to bad weather, while the blast furnace output spiked on demand from the automotive industry.
The company’s sales in Q3 2020 dropped to 4.8mn mt from 5.1mn mt in Q3 2019 but rose from 4.6mn mt in Q2 2020.
The firm’s revenue in the third quarter of the year fell to KRW3.7bn ($3.3mn) from KRW4.4bn in Q3 2019 and rose from KRW3.6bn in Q2 2020. Its operating profit in Q3 2020 was KRW18bn down from KRW34bn in Q3 2019 and up from KRW9bn in Q2 2020.