China’s spot steel prices continued to drop as steelmakers’ price cuts hit market sentiment.
Prices were either lower or flat in major steel markets.
Rebar prices in Shanghai dropped 20 yuan from Wednesday to 4,040-4,210 yuan ($640-667) per tonne. Prices for hot rolled coil in the city also lost 20 yuan to 4,280-4,290 yuan per tonne.
In Beijing, prices for both rebar and HRC remained flat at 4,210-4,290 yuan per tonne and 4,280-4,300 yuan per tonne respectively.
“Traders are reducing sale prices further because the arrival costs are getting lower with steel mills cutting [ex-works] prices,” a trader in Shanghai told Metal Bulletin.
Nine other steel mills cut their rebar and wire rod prices on Thursday. One of them, Guangzhou Steel, cut the price of its rebar by 140 yuan per tonne.
In response to the softening market, some longs producers have started performing maintenance works to cut production this week.
Rizhao Steel will start a three-day maintenance from May 10, which will cut rebar production by 20,000 tonnes, according to trading sources.
The October rebar contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange settled at 4,241 yuan per tonne, down 23 yuan from Wednesday.
The raw materials market also softened on Thursday with spot prices for iron ore down $1 from Wednesday’s price to $147-148 per tonne cfr.
The price of 150mm-diameter billet in Tangshan was flat at 3,710 yuan per tonne.