Pakistani buyers resumed trades for shredded, albeit, in very limited volumes to refill inventories before Ramadan. After a slow start this week, trades are yet to normalize as many buyers are still away from the market. Active restocking is less likely given only 18-20 days are left for the start of Ramadan.
Domestic semi-finished and scrap prices have started moving up amid limited supply and high input costs. Demand has also strengthened offering marginal support to importers.
The Davis Index for containerized shredded, Thursday, settled at $431.43/mt cfr Port Qasim up $3.22/mt from Wednesday. Pakistani buyers concluded shredded booking at $430-432/mt cfr Qasim but suppliers’ expectations increased to $435-440/mt cfr Qasim. Pakistani buyers are waiting for Turkish mills to resume bulk purchases to gain more clarity on shredded prices, believe suppliers.
Despite increasing supply from yards, a hike in container freight rate led to a higher landed cost of scrap. The freight gap between India and Pakistan has widened by over $10/mt. Despite a drop in Indian prices, offers to Pakistan remained comparatively higher, said traders.
In Turkey, rebar prices showed signs of stability, however, imports stalled for ferrous scrap. Bids for HMS 1&2 (80:20) were around $410-415/mt cfr Turkey on availability of domestic scrap at those levels. Prices have dropped by over $25-30/mt in less than 10 days.
In Pakistan, the daily index for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20), Thursday, settled at $412.5/mt cfr Port Qasim, up $1.79/mt. Major deals remained a rare possibility amid healthier domestic markets. Landed cost on a cfr basis remained high due to a hike in freight component on the New York to Pakistani port route.
Offers for #1 HMS and P&S from UAE, however, increased by another $5-10/mt to $420-430/mt cfr Port Qasim, depending on quality. A few yards based in the UAE have kept asking rates high on expected restocking in the next few days. The Davis Index for UAE-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled at $411/mt cfr Port Qasim, up by $2/mt from Wednesday. A few trades reported at $410-413/mt cfr Qasim on improved demand. Yet many buyers are less interested in HMS bookings on additional taxes to be paid on HMS imports over shredded.
Domestic steel warms up
Bala billet offers were at PKR106,500-107,000/mt ex-works, up PKR500/mt from Wednesday. Asking rates for rebar increased with improving demand. Rebar offers heard at PKR135,000-135,500/mt ex-works Karachi, while in Punjab at PKR130,000-130,500/mt ex-works. Billet grade 60 was offered stable at PKR110,000/mt ex-works.
Delays in imported scrap deliveries amid shipping line issues are driving domestic scrap trades in Pakistan. Offers rose for Art Q toke scrap equivalent to a mix of HMS and P&S by PKR500-1000/mt to PKR86,500-87,000/mt ex-yard Lahore. Trades for Pure Q toke scrap equivalent to shredded were at PKR88,000-88,500/mt ex-yard Lahore, up PKR400-500/mt.