China’s domestic hot-rolled coil prices extended their gains on Wednesday August 11 after futures prices rose for a second straight day on higher market expectations of an output drop and demand recovery from low summer trading.
Eastern China (Shanghai): 5,820-5,860 yuan ($897-903) per tonne, up by 40-60 yuan per tonne
The most-traded HRC contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange hit an intraday high of 5,947 yuan per tonne in early morning trade on Wednesday, its highest in more than a week, before it pared some gains to finish the day at 5,901 yuan per tonne.
Expectations of a drop in steel supply in the coming months cemented following the report by a local information provider released late on Monday that the top steelmaking hub, Tangshan, aims to cut its crude steel output by 12.37 million tonnes in 2021 compared with 2020.
The city also plans to extend its existing curbs on steel production to mid-March 2022 to ensure air quality for the forthcoming Winter Olympics in Beijing.
Coupled with the anticipated demand recovery, this underpinned steel prices, sources said.
There have been signs of an improvement in demand for HRC, a Tianjin-based trader said.
Trading activities across the spot HRC market, however, weakened from Tuesday in the wake of further price rises, sources said.
Fastmarkets’ steel hot-rolled coil index export, fob main port China: $926.67 per tonne, up by $9.17 per tonne
The index rose after an increase in domestic prices prompted trading houses to hike their offers and indications of workable prices for transactions.
Trading activities across the spot HRC export market, however, remained quiet while some trading houses and mills abstained from the export market amid fears of possible export duties.
Inquiries from buyers were poor, sources said.
Given domestic prices, some traders indicated that $910-945 per tonne fob might be workable for transactions of SS400 HRC.
Offers from mills, meanwhile, stood above $1,000 per tonne fob for October-shipment.
“I am out of the export market, as limited supply prompts me to prioritize the domestic market. Export offers for HRC now are $1,000 per tonne fob at the lowest, and I see limited downward room for an achievable price for transactions, given a bullish outlook for prices,” a mill source from north China said.
Shanghai Futures Exchange
The most-traded October HRC contract ended at 5,901 yuan per tonne on Wednesday, up by 45 yuan from Tuesday’s close.