Domestic ferrous scrap prices in Indian markets halted their uptrend in most markets on Thursday amid indications of import prices plateauing in the coming days. Islamic nations, including Turkey, will witness reduced buying during the Eid-al-Adha holidays. Mills in India had already indicated the possibility of prices mellowing in the near term as finished steel prices could not provide enough support.
In Ludhiana, the bi-weekly Davis Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) declined by Rs500/mt ($6.68/mt) from Tuesday to Rs23,000/mt ($307.18/mt) del mill, while the index for sponge iron settled unchanged at Rs20,150/mt del mill. There is a lack of clarity in the way the steel market is set to go, said a Ludhiana-based mill owner. In Mandi Gobindgarh, the daily index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) fell by Rs100/mt to Rs20,800/mt del mill and the index for sponge iron settled unchanged at Rs19,800/mt del mill.
With bullish scrap prices, most mills have postponed their purchases hoping for a correction in the coming days. Trades were subdued and the daily index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) and sponge iron in Mumbai settled unchanged at Rs22,100/mt and Rs18,850/mt del mill, respectively. Some steelmakers have scheduled maintenance activities as monsoons in Mumbai are severe and tend to affect construction activity.
A few markets like Hyderabad, Indore, and Raipur were exceptions with HMS 1&2 (80:20) prices trending up. The bi-weekly indexes in these cities for the scrap grade rose by Rs300/mt to Rs22,700/mt del Indore mill; Rs200/mt to Rs21,550/mt del Hyderabad mill and Rs450/mt to Rs24,050/mt del Raipur mill. The indexes for sponge iron in Indore and Hyderabad, however, settled unchanged at Rs20,600/mt and Rs18,600/mt del mill, respectively, but fell by Rs450/mt to Rs17,300/mt del Raipur mill.