Chinese Steel Market Prices This Week
Mining News Pro - This week Chinese steel market showed signs of improvement with the gradual resumption of steelmakers to market post Coronavirus outbreak.

According to Mining News Pro - In the beginning of the week domestic steel prices witnessed slump on lower domestic sales. This in turn led to fall in export offers for overseas buyers amid higher inventories. However, towards the week end domestic steel prices rebounded as the trading activities picked up on partial resumption of Chinese steelmakers.

This week HRC and rebar export offers fell on low trades and higher inventories with the mills. Billet prices also witnessed plunge on a weekly basis. Iron ore prices improved amid an increase in interest for March loading cargoes. Tight supplies and restrained logistics keep coking coal prices firm.

Spot iron ore picked up amid improving demand- Chinese spot iron ore prices opened up this week at USD 90.10/MT CFR China and increased to USD 91.80/MT CFR China towards the weekend amid improved interest for March loading cargoes.

As per data compiled by SteelHome consultancy, Iron ore inventory at major Chinese ports recorded at 128.6 MnT as of 20th Feb as against 130.65 MnT assessed a week ago.

Spot pellet premium down W-o-W- Spot pellet premium for Fe 65% grade pellets assessed at USD 28.75/MT, CFR China this week as against USD 32.85/MT, CFR China last week.

Pellet premium has dropped on thin Chinese buying interest due to weak steel margins.

Pellet inventory at major ports dropped on a weekly basis to 4.4 MnT against at 4.6 MnT last week.

Spot lump premium gains upward momentum W-o-W- Spot Lump premium for the weekend witnessed at USD 0.2750/dmtu as compared to USD 0.2700/dmtu last weekend. As per sources, lump demand may loosen amid end of heating season towards mid-March and also due to reducing environmental concerns.

 Coking coal prices rise on tight supply- Seaborne coking coal prices moved higher this week on tight supply following the corona-virus outbreak.

Meanwhile a tender was concluded for 80,000 MT of an Australian Premium Mid Vol (PMV) Goonyella at USD 156.22/MT FOB Australia with April 5-19 laycan.

Also Chinese end-users also expect gradual resumption of domestic coal production and logistics activities as the government has also implemented measures to aid the recovery for the Chinese market.

Latest offers for the Premium HCC grade are assessed at around USD 159.50/MT FOB Australia compared with USD 153.50/MT FoB Australia a week ago.

Domestic billet prices plunge amid delayed resumption- After five consecutive weeks, the country has witnessed some movement in the domestic billet market. However, the price correction was high degree negative owing to the low demand amid partial resumption of operations.

This week, Chinese domestic billet market was settled at RMB 3,010/MT, down RMB 290/MT against Lunar holidays closing. The market sentiments in the country were reported weak. Billet export offers from China for SE Asia were heard to have at USD 415/MT, CFR.

Chinese steel mills lowered HRC export offers to push trades- Chinese HRC export offers witnessed a fall this week by around USD 10-20/MT to expedite overseas sales as the domestic market demand remained relatively low.

Thus, the current week HRC export offers stood at USD 460-480/MT FoB China, which was USD 480-490/MT FoB basis a week ago.

Meanwhile, the domestic HRC prices were up by RMB 40/MT to RMB 3,500-3,520 (Eastern China) in comparison with RMB 3,460-3,480/MT (Eastern China) in the preceding week.

Thus, improvement in trading activity due to government efforts to return to work fueled optimistic sentiments in the domestic market.

Low overseas demand keeps Chinese Rebar export offers on lower side-Chinese rebar export offers slide down further this week on weakening demand on delayed resumption of steelmakers owing to coronavirus concerns in China and in a few of the other importing nations.

Currently nation`s rebar export offers is around USD 440/MT FoB China against USD 453/MT FoB China last week

Thus, witnessing an ascension of RMB 50/MT, the domestic rebar prices were assessed at RMB 3,420-3,450/MT (Eastern China) in comparison with RMB 3,370-3,400/MT (Eastern China) in the previous week. However, there is an increase in the domestic rebar prices on partial resumption of construction activities in China.

Slight improvement in demand and regain in futures market can be attributed in upward momentum of nations domestic steel prices.

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