China’s domestic and export prices for rebar are likely to come under pressure with limited trading activity. The ongoing rainy season in the country has disrupted the momentum gathered by domestic construction activities post COVID-19 outbreak.
In the domestic market, rebar prices were at CNY3,570-3,600/mt ($503-508/mt) ex-plant north China, almost flat from the prior week. A similar trend prevails in eastern China where the weather conditions have led to limited working hours.
In export markets, the demand for rebar has been comparatively lower than HRC and other flat products or semi-finished products. Rebar offers were reported at $470-475/mt fob China and bids lagged by $10-15/mt.
Construction steel product’s most-traded October contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange dipped by 0.6pc to CNY3,572/mt ($503.58/mt) as the futures market declined this week.
Demand for rebar in July and August could drop further due to high temperature and heavy rain. Though, mills are maintaining their daily production rates high which will raise inventory levels pressuring prices in the coming days.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), though construction and infrastructure projects have gathered pace, new construction projects on floor area basis fell by 12.8pc from to 695.33mn sqm in January-May 2020 from the prior year.
The government has also reimposed some restrictions on people leaving the capital city of Beijing on Tuesday to control COVID spread to other cities and provinces.
May crude steel output record high
China’s steel output rose to a record high in May to 92.27mn mt, up by 8.5pc from April and by 4.2pc from the prior-year period. Demand for steel remained high in the month on the back of increased construction activity. Meanwhile, amid fears of Vale suspending production in Brazil, iron ore prices too were bullish.