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Asian HRC tumbles to near 25-week low on order drought



Global Steel & Raw Materials

June 1, 2017 -- By Estelle Tran





US sheet steel prices edged down on May 31 as market sources saw the pricing consensus drift lower. S&P Global Platts lowered its daily hot-rolled coil assessment to $580-$600/st from $580-$610/st.


The cold-rolled coil assessment also dropped to $780-$800/st from $780-$810/st. Both assessments are normalized to an ex-works Midwest (Indiana) basis.


One service center source said he has been maxing out his contracts and not buying spot as prices have drifted down.


He said he saw HRC offers for more than 10,000 st at $550-$580/st ex-works but was not as sure about smaller tons. One mill offered him $600/st for smaller orders.


There are some Southern and Canadian mills with higher freight costs into the US Midwest at $540-$560/st for HRC, he said.


The service center source said he believed prices will continue to slide through June and maybe reach a bottom in July. A mill source agreed that most spot prices are around $580/st ex-works.


There are some inquiries for several thousand tons that customers are shopping around, and he hoped that there would be more clarity about pricing soon.


The problem now, he said, is that everyone wants the price that large-volume buyers pay without committing to such substantial orders.


Another service center source said every mill that supplies him has quoted $600/st for HRC, but he has not bought during the week ending June 1.


For CRC and galvanized sheet, suppliers have mostly quoted $780/st base pricing.


"I do know some of the mills are hinting if you are looking at big hedge buys or big opportunities that there may be room to move off the $780/st," he said, though he did not think anyone would want to take such a large position right now with prices still trending down.


Platts analyzes other steel and scrap products in this feature:


Iron ore | Scrap | HRC | Rebar | Semi-finished | News


Next commentary: Turkish rebar mills hold on to local market, avoid export






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