Recovery in China’s metal market has been rapid after the COVID-19 pandemic, as indicated by the price and production levels. In late October, rebar prices witnessed an uptick of 0.2pc from the prior-year period to CNY3,758.3/mt and up from CNY3,751.8/mt in mid-October, revealed the National Bureau of Statistics data. Similarly, wire prices increased by 0.3pc from last year to CNY3,988.3/mt and from 3,947.9/mt in mid -October.
Early November prices are set to rise further as Shagang Jiangsu Group raised prices for rebar by CNY50/mt for deliveries till November 10, paving the way for other steelmakers. Wire rod prices were raised by CNY100/mt.
Infrastructure projects in the country are picking up pace, spurring demand for rebar and wire rods. But prices for flat products, including plates and HRC have not seen a noticeable uptrend amid elevated inventories. A month ago, prices for flat products witnessed a steep rise, and the market is still absorbing these levels.
Amongst non-ferrous metals, prices for aluminium ingots declined by CNY81/mt in October-end to CNY14,855.3/mt from the year prior, while that for lead ingots fell by CNY145.9/mt to CNY14,418.4/mt. China is known for exporting aluminium ingots. But a second wave of COVID-19 in Europe and the resulting lockdown measures, coupled with the postponement of US stimulus package amid ongoing presidential elections, has pressured demand in overseas market. Chinese demand, though remains strong which could cushion the prices from a further fall.