SUMMER SLOWDOWN HITS
STEEL DEMAND AND PRICES IN NORTHERN EUROPE - MEPS
Northern European flat
products prices decreased in July. Demand from the manufacturing
sector remains weak. A modest recovery is anticipated during the
second half of 2013.
Construction activity has increased significantly in Scandinavia as
developers attempt to get projects back on track after the long
winter. Hot rolled coil is being offered at low prices from Italy,
Eastern Europe and Asia. Consumption by carmakers and other OEMs is
subdued. All coil requirements attract competition between
stockists. Industrial operations in the Nordic region were
substantially reduced by mid-July, due to the summer holiday season.
Consumption of hot rolled plate remains weak. Demand from yellow
goods manufacturers has been fair of late but has declined for the
vacation period. Sales volumes in Norway have dropped in recent
times as local shipbuilders and fabricators have lost business to
competitors in Asia, in particular. Producers and consumers may
extend their summer shutdown periods.
Transaction values for all long products in northern Europe dropped
again, this month despite already being at a very low level.
However, scrap values have been climbing steadily since mid-June.
This trend could support producers’ proposed price hikes after the
Construction activity has increased in Sweden. There has been an
improvement in sales tonnages of structural sections in the
Netherlands, supported by a few large building projects. Consumption
of rebar has been robust in Denmark, thanks to a number of
state-funded infrastructure schemes. Selling values in Austria have
continued to slide, owing to subdued demand and low average scrap
costs in June. Mill stock levels of merchant bars are high due to
slow market conditions in the region. Demand from manufacturing
industries, including automotive, is poor.
Steel Review Supplement
Also See: MEPS
Nordic Index and MEPS Nordic
Free Sample copy
European Steel Review Supplement
up for free MEPS steel news alerts