Imported ferrous scrap trades in India remained largely paused, Thursday, as mills stayed away from high offers. Domestic steel prices dropped on slow demand and the outlook for sustained high prices turned bleak. Suppliers are holding offers in anticipation of higher prices in the near term. Buyers opined ferrous scrap prices could correct in April ahead of Ramadan.
The daily Davis Index for containerized shredded settled at $465/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, down $2.5/mt from a day prior. Mills opted for domestic scrap over imported and showed very little interest in booking imports. Trades are expected to pick up next week in India with tightening domestic scrap availability. Offers for UK/EU-origin shredded at $460-470/mt cfr Nhava Sheva with no buyers at those levels.
The daily Davis Index for UAE-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20), Thursday, settled at $422/cfr Nhava Sheva, down $4/mt as trades slowed. Offers for Dubai-origin HMS #1 and P&S ranged between $420-430/mt cfr Nhava Sheva. Mills are targeting around $410-415/mt cfr Nhava Sheva and $425-430/mt cfr Chennai. On Thursday, a steelmaker in Chennai refused a firm offer for Dubai HMS at $450/mt cfr Chennai.
The daily index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20), Wednesday, fell by $2.5/mt to $425/mt cfr Nhava Sheva. Suppliers held offers in anticipation of stronger domestic demand in March. HRC prices in the US hit a record $1,250/mt ex-works fuelling bullish sentiment. A few buyers anticipate prices to drop with an increasing number of suppliers in the market.
Shipbreaking melting scrap prices in ex-Alang, Thursday, dropped by Rs700/mt to Rs30,600/mt amid no buying interest in the market.
Towards mid-March, there could be tightness in domestic scrap which could push importers to resume trades, said traders. Ingot prices in Mandi Gobindgarh dropped to Rs39700/mt ex-works down Rs600 on Thursday.
In China, pollution-related restrictions are expected to curb production. In Tangshan, seven blast furnaces are expected to close completely by March 10. Despite high inventories drop in production to cap pollution has lifted steel prices in China.
Australian iron ore with 62pc Fe content rose above 2011’s highs of $176.5/mt cfr China amid a continued uptick in iron ore and steel futures. Domestic billet prices inched down by CNY20/mt to CNY4,410/mt ex-Tangshan including VAT.
Indian exporters raised offers to $565-570/mt fob with other suppliers raising offers to above $605-610/mt cfr Southeast Asia and China.
On Thursday, the daily Davis Index for containerized shredded slipped to $467.11/mt cfr Indian subcontinent, down by $2.72/mt. The daily index for containerized US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled at $432.33/mt cfr Indian subcontinent, down $1.88/mt. With buyers refusing high prices, the prolonged pause in trades marginally pressurised offers on Thursday. But most sellers are confident that prices will rebound on strong global cues.