Domestic ferrous scrap prices in most Asian markets were flat to up this week. Prolonged inactivity due to holidays pressured prices. Steel mills shied away from buying post the national holidays. With a shortage of scrap in Japan, market participants expect offers to rise this week.
South Korean domestic ferrous scrap prices were flat this week on limited supplies. Chuseok holidays have ended but buyers are yet to return for new bookings, said local traders. In the imported scrap market, Dongkuk and Hyundai Steel are negotiating deals with Japanese and US yards, but no deals were heard. Buyers have also opted to wait before resuming imported scrap bookings as finished steel demand remains sluggish in Korea.
The Davis Index for domestic Heavy A delivered Incheon and Pohang, Tuesday, settled flat at KRW320,000/mt ($276/mt) delivered mills, with major steel mills like Hyundai, Dongkuk and others buying limited scrap at index prices.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic Light A settled flat at KRW275,000/mt delivered Pohang mill. Limited trades for the grade were reported at the index price as mills focused on buying special grades for high alloy making purposes.
Rebar and ferrous scrap prices were flat in Taiwan on Tuesday amid slow trading activities due to holidays. Steelmaker Feng Hsin Steel anticipates prices to remain flat till the demand for finished steel does not improve. Feng Hsin’s base offers for rebar was at NT$14,600/mt ex-works.
The weekly Davis Indexes for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) in South and North Taiwan was flat at NT$7,125/mt ($248/mt) and NT$7,300/mt delivered mill, respectively, on Tuesday, from the prior week.
In seaborne markets, US-origin containerized HMS 1&2 (80:20) offers dropped to $265-270/mt cfr Taiwan with no deals heard. Bids for the same grade dropped to $260/mt. The daily index for containerized US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled down by $1/mt at $264/mt cfr Taiwan, from the day prior. Offers for HMS 1&2 (90:10) were at $270/mt, while no deals heard.
Taiwanese mills are yet to return to the market after holidays and are expected to start importing scrap soon. Negotiations for Japanese and Russian scrap are on-going but no deals are confirmed. Offers for South American scrap were at $260/mt cfr Taiwan, flat from a week ago.
Market participants are expecting prices to rise with news of rising Japanese offers. Domestic scrap shortage is expected to add to the woes of importers who are still bidding low.
The weekly Davis Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) rose by VND1,62,500($7/mt) to settle at VND6,600,000/mt ($284/mt) delivered South Vietnam inclusive of taxes with limited deals heard at index prices. Shortage of ferrous scrap in the domestic market and lower volumes of scrap imports lifted prices, said traders. Vietnamese mills remained cautious of bookings imported scrap, while suppliers were not interested in accepting low bids for bulk shipments.
Vietnamese mills are gradually increasing domestic and imported scrap purchases amid improving billet prices in China. A deal for 20,000mt billet at $437/mt cfr China for December shipment last week, firmed billet offers at $440/mt cfr.
In the bulk market, Japanese offers for #2 HMS were flat at JPY26000-26500/mt ($246.5-251/mt) fob.
In China, Shagang Steel raised domestic scrap prices and finished steel prices for October deliveries. The weekly Davis Index for the grade settled at CNY2,665/mt ($396/mt) delivered mill, up by CNY30/mt from the prior Tuesday. Delivered mill price rose by $8/mt from the prior week.
Prices for billets in the domestic market rose by CNY110/mt to CNY3,410/mt ex-Tangshan mill on Tuesday, from a week earlier. Offers for billets firmed from last week at $440/mt cfr. Market participants said that domestic scrap prices in China are expected to rise in the coming week with traders expecting demand for finished steel and iron ore to rise over the near term.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) fell by THB50/mt ($1.6/mt) and settled at THB9,150/mt ($293/mt) delivered Rayong mill inclusive of taxes. Mills that had stopped purchases during the last three weeks started buying limited quantities this week. Traders indicated that Thai mills have slowly increased bids for imported scrap but no trades were heard. They expect imported scrap volumes to rise in the coming weeks with a firm demand for billets in China.
Sluggish domestic finished steel demand is still a cause of concern for many mills who are dependent on construction and infrastructural sectors.
The weekly indexes for HMS 1&2 (80:20) were flat at MYR1,015/mt ($245/mt) and MYR1,040/mt ($251/mt) delivered western mills and eastern mills including taxes, respectively. Both prices rose by $1/mt due to currency fluctuation.
A shortage of local scrap has lifted offers and traders refuse to sell at lower prices. No trades were heard in the import market, while demand for ferrous scrap is expected to rise with rising demand for billets in China.
Market participants are expecting domestic demand for finished steel to remain subdued in the next few weeks amid an increase in COVID-19 cases. Offers for US-origin HMS 1&2 (80:20) were heard at $255-260/mt cfr.
($1= JPY105.7; TWD28.7; CNY6.7; THB31.3; MYR4.14; VND23,185; KRW1,157)