Asian weekly domestic ferrous scrap prices were mixed this week. In Taiwan and Vietnam, prices rose driven by bullish imported scrap. Prices in Japan and China scrap markets, however, were unchanged amidst sluggish demand.
Taiwan’s domestic scrap prices rose as mills began restocking. The weekly Davis Index for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) in South Taiwan settled at NT$7,050/mt ($232/mt) del plant, up by NT$150/mt. The weekly index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) in North Taiwan settled at NT$7,350/mt del plant, up by NT$300/mt.
Feng Hsin Steel raised its domestic scrap purchase price twice in a week. It is now paying NT$6,900-7,000/mt for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) delivered Taichung plant, up by NT$500/mt from the prior week. The steelmaker announced its grade 40 rebar prices including local taxes at NT$15,300-15,500/mt ex-plant, up NT$300-500/mt from a week ago.
Domestic scrap was priced lower than the imported ferrous scrap. Landed cost of seaborne scrap increased driven by higher freight charges amid a shortage of empty containers. Mills, thus, preferred to book competitively priced domestic scrap.
US-origin containerised HMS 1&2 (80:20) prices increased to $240-245/mt cfr Taiwan, up from trades reported at $235-238/mt cfr Taiwan late last week.
Japanese H:H2 in small bulk cargoes traded at $255/mt cfr Taiwan, up by $5/mt from the prior week. Japanese #2 HMS in bulk cargoes was offered at $260-265/mt cfr Vietnam. But trades concluded at at $255/mt cfr Vietnam late last week.
Despite an increase in global ferrous scrap prices, Japanese domestic prices remained flat as Tokyo Steel, held prices unchanged since Feb 13.
Bids for #2 HMS remained at JPY20,000/mt del Utsunomiya plant in the Kanto region.
Bids for #2 HMS in Tahara, Kyushu, Okayama and Takamatsu, were at JPY20,500/mt, JPY20,000/mt, JPY19,000/mt and JPY18,000/mt, respectively.
Bids for Bushelling remained at JPY22,500/mt del Tahara and JPY22,000/mt del Utsunomiya.
Finished steel demand remains week in the market and mills have announced production cuts to save costs.
The Japanese yen depreciated by over 1pc resulting in a drop in its billet export prices this week.
Japanese yen traded at JPY111.8 against the US$ late last week, compared to JPY109.8 levels on Feb 18.
Japanese billet sold to Philippines-based steel makers was priced at $412-415/mt cfr Manila.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic Heavy A del Incheon settled Tuesday flat at KRW270,000/mt ($238/mt) and KRW260,000/mt del Pohang. The weekly Davis Index for domestic Light A delivered Pohang plant too settled flat at KRW250,000/mt.
A few mills announced a drop in ferrous scrap purchase prices by KRW5000-10,000/mt effective Feb 24.
Traders believe that domestic scrap prices in South Korea have now reached a bottom and are likely to heard north in the coming days.
The weekly Davis Index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled Tuesday at VND5,800,000/mt ($250/mt) del South Vietnam inclusive of taxes, up from VND5,700,000/mt the prior Tuesday. Prices increased driven by a rise in imported scrap prices.
Bookings of domestic scrap increased this week. Vietnamese steel mills booked Japanese and other origin ferrous scrap cargoes actively citing limited availability of domestic scrap.
Japanese #2 HMS in bulk cargoes traded at $255/mt cfr Vietnam late last week and Japanese suppliers offered the same at $260-265/mt cfr Vietnam.
Japanese and Chinese billets were offered at $410-415/mt cfr Southeast Asian buyers, but Vietnamese mills were not ready to offer below $420/mt cfr Southeast Asia.
In the finished steel market, mills are facing a margin squeeze amid increased ferrous scrap prices as billets are priced competitively.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) settled at CNY2,550/mt ($365/mt), down CNY25/mt from the prior week, inclusive of 13pc vat del eastern China mills as demand remains week.
Ferrous scrap inventories at major Chinese steel mills have fallen to lower levels amidst the transportation disruption due to the Covid-19 (coronavirus) lockdown.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) delivered Rayong settled at THB8,800/mt ($277/mt), down THB25/mt, from the prior week, inclusive of taxes.
The weekly Davis Index for domestic HMS 1&2 (80:20) delivered western mills settled flat at MYR900/mt ($224/mt). The index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) del eastern mills also remained flat at MYR1,000/mt, inclusive of taxes.
($1=NT30.37, CNY7.02, THB31.72, MYR4.23 VND23279.7, KRW1,213.3)