Local Italian flat steel demand weaker than expected

Wednesday, 31 July 2019 15:15:26 (GMT+3)   |   Brescia

The demand recorded in the Italian flat steel products market is even lower than what would normally be expected in the pre-holiday period. The automotive sector continues to suffer and several service centers are not buying since they think to have more than adequate stocks. Local steel mills, supported by production cuts, increased costs and the lack of attractiveness of foreign offers, hope to be able to increase prices in the fourth quarter, with the aim of recovering margins.

Nevertheless, market sources are skeptical about a possible improvement in the situation at the end of the summer. They believe that, without a strengthening of downstream demand, it will be difficult for mills to implement price rises. Currently, hot rolled coil (HRC) base prices in the Italian market are mainly in the range of €440-460/mt ($488-511/mt) ex-works, remaining stable compared to last week.

€1 = $1.11

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