Bangladeshi mills showed limited interest in booking imported ferrous scrap as COVID-19-related lockdown severely dampened steel demand amid Ramadan lull. Despite few takers, suppliers kept their offers firm amid a dip in scrap collection rate and hopes of a strong outlook for May and June in other buyer countries.
The daily Davis Index for containerized shredded Wednesday settled at $475.5/mt cfr Chattogram, down $3.25/mt from Tuesday. Offers for UK-origin containerized shredded were at $480-485/mt cfr Chattogram, while buyers bid $472-475/mt cfr Chattogram. Most buyers decided to hold their purchases till there is clarity on price direction.
Consumption of ferrous scrap dropped significantly as only large mills are operating at full capacity. They have managed to arrange worker’s accommodations and safety needs. On the other hand, many small to medium scale mills lowered their production to align with the weak steel demand scenario and the upcoming monsoon season.
In the bulk market, US West Coast sellers were bullish despite demand staying under pressure in Turkey. Offers for HMS 1&2 (80:20) were firm at $485-490/mt cfr Chattogram while Japanese export offers for small bulks increased amid rising freight rates. With improved demand from Taiwan, Vietnam and Chinese buyers, Japanese sellers turned their back to Bangladeshi buyers.
A few interested mills raised their bids to secure materials. Availability of containers remains scarce, driving freight rates up for all Asian routes. The daily index for HMS 1&2 (80:20) from Latin America settled at $460/mt cfr Chattogram, up by $3/mt from Tuesday. Latin American yards continued to sell in their domestic market or have shifted their focus to the other subcontinental markets, especially India, where bids improved amid a domestic shortage.
The daily indexes for US-origin, UK-origin, and Australia-origin containerized HMS 1&2 (80:20) moved up by $1/mt each to $461/mt, $451/mt, and $463/mt cfr Chattogram, respectively, as traders held offers high amid tight availability.
Bids of $450-455/mt cfr Chattogram for HMS 1&2 (80:20) found no sellers on Wednesday. Hong Kong-origin HMS bundles are reported traded in thin volumes at $450/mt cfr Chattogram.
Domestic scrap market silent
Since the start of this week, offers for domestic ship scrap equivalent to P&S remained unchanged at BDT46,000-46,500/mt ex-yards. 16mm ship plates were offered at BDT52,500-53,000/mt ex-yards, while import prices for scrapped vessels were at $500-510/ldt cfr Chattogram. Recyclers stayed away from those levels, which affected the generation of ship scrap.
Steel holds ground
Small and medium-scale steelmakers opted to sell rebars over billet due to better profitability. Domestic billet offers were at BDT60,000-60,500/mt ex-works Chattogram.
Large steelmakers kept asking rates for rebar at BDT70,000-71,000/mt ex-works. Dhaka-based steel mills raised offers to BDT67,500-68,000/mt ex-works on Wednesday to match large steelmaker’s rates.