PRICE VOLATILITY UNSETTLES BUYING
SENTIMENT IN SEVERAL EMERGING STEEL MARKETS - MEPS
MEPS BRIC average flat product carbon
steel transaction prices, measured in US dollars, increased in June - despite
reductions recorded in Brazil and China. Average figures for the long products
declined - irrespective of recoveries in Russia and India.
Purchasing activity has begun to exhibit signs of stagnation in Ukraine.
Shipments to industrial companies in June were weaker than predicted,
particularly to tube and pipe fabricators.
Procurement activity in Turkey remains erratic. Stockists are booking for only
immediate requirements due to price fluctuations and the close proximity of
Ramadan. The downward price trend of key steelmaking ingredients has only
aggravated the situation. Support from external demand is limited.
Procurement activity in the United Arab Emirates was less vigorous than in May.
Underlying demand for finished steel products has fallen short of industry
projections – particularly, from construction firms and pipe fabricators. Local
steel producers continue to face stiff price competition from Chinese, Indian
and CIS suppliers.
South African service centres are growing more pessimistic about the prospects
for domestic steel consumption in the remainder of 2014. Service centres have
started to downgrade inventory levels to minimise potential losses from labour
strike action. Deliveries to downstream industries have continued to
The outlook for the Mexican steel market is unchanged. Domestic mills plan to
persevere with their “US dollar indexed” pricing strategies. Meanwhile, the
National Chamber of Iron and Steel Industry (Canacero) has forecast that
finished steel production in 2014 will total 19 million tonnes – a year-on-year
increase of 4.3 percent.
Source: MEPS -
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