China’s Jiangsu Shagang Group has rolled over prices of long and flat finished steel products for late-March deliveries. With the build-up of finished steel inventories at Chinese mills, most producers rolled over prices to liquidate stock. With stricter production cuts announced in Tangshan province, steel prices remained rangebound with bearish sentiments.
Shagang steel has kept spot prices unchanged since early-March. Offers for wire rod (HPB300, 8mm) remained at CNY4,960/mt ($762/mt) ex-works inclusive of 13pc VAT. The steelmaker offered HRC at CNY5,200/mt ex-works.
|Shagang steel’s retail prices for late-March|
|Rebar wire rod||HRB400||5100|
In the domestic market, prices for Q235 150mm square billet jumped to CNY4,620/mt ex-Tangshan on Monday including VAT, up CNY140/mt from Friday. Chinese importers remained largely silent for offers ranging from $590-600/mt cfr China. In the spot market, iron ore ferrous content 62pc dropped to $157/mt cfr north China on Monday. Prices dropped by $14-15/mt in ten days period.
China-based Yong steel and Zenith steel raised prices by CNY50/mt for late-March deliveries. Zenith Steel lifted rebar and wire rod prices by CNY50/mt each to CNY4,900/mt and CNY5,050/mt ex-works, respectively.
Exemption from production curbs
The Tangshan government has asked steelmakers to curb steel production by 30-50pc. Seven steel mills are expected to cut production by half from Saturday until June 30 and by 30pc in the second half of 2021. These mills include a stainless steel mill owned by HBIS Group, Jinma Steel Group, Chunxing Special Steel and Donghua Steel and all other mills that failed to adopt emergency pollution measures. However, two mills owned by the Shagang Group are exempt.