Indian steel mills actively sought imported scrap on Wednesday as finished steel prices marked an uptick by Rs1,200-2,000/mt for November deliveries. Strong rebar demand is likely to lift ferrous scrap prices further in the coming days. Mills are restocking scrap aggressively despite depreciation of Indian currency, on the back of firm demand from downstream industries and a faster-than-expected recovery in India’s steel sector.
The weekly Davis Index for cast iron, rotors, and drums on Wednesday settled at $347/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, up by $3/mt with containerized trades reported in the range $350-355/mt cfr Nhava Sheva. Domestic market demand is firm in the US and Europe, which led suppliers to raise offers for cast iron (rotors and drums) in anticipation of short supply in future. Availability in December will lower further with the winters making creating logistical difficulties.
Indian steel mills continued inquiries for imported ferrous scrap as the demand in the export market has recovered. A bulk billet export deal was reported, with a Gujarat-based mill selling around 25,000mt billets at $426/mt fob or $460/mt cfr basis to the Mombasa Kenya-based buyer through a trader based in UAE.
The Davis Index for containerized shredded on Wednesday settled at $328.33/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, up by $3.83/mt from Tuesday. A few buyers indicated willingness to pay $327-330/mt cfr Nhava Sheva for shredded. Offers for imported scrap jumped to $330-335/mt cfr Nhava Sheva.
Suppliers from the UAE preferred Indian buyers over Pakistan. The daily Davis Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) from UAE, Wednesday, was at $317/mt cfr Nhava Sheva, up by $3/mt, with few trades reported in the range $315-317/mt cfr Nhava Sheva by a Jalna-based EAF maker. Trades for containerized #1 HMS without the cast and galvanized iron from Dubai were above $320/mt cfr Nhava Sheva.
The Davis Index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) inched up by $2.65/mt to $317.79/mt cfr Nhava Sheva on Wednesday as trades picked up. 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. A few bulk suppliers stayed away from trades amid uncertainty around the US presidential election results.
In the northern part of India, many importers are still waiting for the normalization of rail services to get their containers delivered. A few preferred domestic scraps as a stopgap measure, but volumes remain limited. Mills have urged the State governments to resume rail services on Mundra port -Punjab route. The Punjab government has warned the producers to brace for the massive power cuts as the last thermal power plant has shut down the operations due to a short supply of coal.
Limited container availability caused by higher demand for containers from the food and grain shippers has pushed freight prices up for a few routes in South Asia. The daily Davis Index for containerized shredded, Wednesday, settled at $326/mt cfr India subcontinent, up by $3.59/mt from Tuesday. The daily Davis Index for containerized US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) was at $315.03/mt cfr India subcontinent, up by $2.49/mt.