Finished steel inventories of the leading steelmakers in China fell by 11.26pc or 1.54mn mt, to 12.15mn mt between October 21-31 compared to previous ten-day period, according to China Iron and Steel Association (CISA). The country’s inventories were up by 17pc early-October and 0.7pc in mid-October before declining in later in the month.
In late-October, China witnessed strong domestic demand which resulted in high steel consumption, depleting finished steel inventories of key Chinese medium and large steelmakers sharply. In the same period, daily crude steel output at the mills that are members of the CISA lowered by 0.77pc to 2.16mn mt.
The 2020-21 winter production restrictions have been issued in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, Tangshan and Yangtze River Delta, though the impact was limited. These restrictions also affected blast furnaces and sintering operations at most of the mills in China and will continue from November 1 to March 31.
It is expected that China’s steel output could drop further in November. Demand for steel started to weaken in Northern China amid lowering construction activities because of the seasonal constraints.