JAPAN STEEL PRICE ROUNDUP FROM MEPS INTERNATIONAL LTD
Competition from overseas continued to
be a problem in Japan, according to MEPS. Hot rolled coil selling figures
remained unchanged, in February, month-on-month.
Large tonnages of imported commodity grade plate continued to keep the lid on
selling values in Japan, where sales to the construction industry were weak
amidst economic gloom. Shipbuilding demand was healthier.
The producers, again, held cold rolled coil transaction numbers, in February, at
the previous month’s level. We noted keen competition from suppliers elsewhere
in the Asian region. Demand from automakers shrunk. However, inventories in the
general market were slowly being reduced.
Orders for coated steel from the building sector weakened. The vehicle makers
were hit by falling sales, thus reducing their steel requirements. Imports of
hot dipped galvanised coil continued to pose problems for local steelmakers.
Wire rod transaction figures remained the same month-on-month, in February,
despite low scrap costs. Meanwhile, import volumes of structural sections
continued to climb. Despite this, selling values were maintained.
Kyoei Steel, the largest rebar maker in Japan, planned to keep February contract
prices flat, despite tumbling scrap costs. However, in the marketplace,
transaction numbers posted a small decline.
Merchant bar customers won a small concession during February settlements.
Weakening sales to the building industry, surplus stocks and cheaper raw
materials contributed to the fall.
Steel Review - February Issue
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