Canadian domestic rebar prices move upward

Thursday, 17 January 2019 22:38:13 (GMT+3)   |   San Diego

Although many buyers and sellers in Canada’s domestic rebar market are holding off on major orders until the resolution of the ongoing CITT import safeguard hearing, sources tell SteelOrbis that market prices have moved strongly upward in the last month. Canadian rebar mills have reportedly cited domestic scrap price increases for the rebar uptrend, and buyers report that pushback against higher prices is futile despite the fact that mills have boosted capacity recently to prove to the government that they can service the market in the absence of imports.

However, sources tell SteelOrbis that the increased capacity will be “short-lived,” and prices could rise higher in the near-term. Instead of official mill price increases, the upticks are reportedly taking place on a customer-by-customer basis.

West coast Canadian rebar prices are now around CAD 1,025-1,125/mt ($772-$847/mt) ex-mill, although those prices might not rise as fast as other regions due to expected rebar imports from Mexico, which could potentially replace imports from the US if trade tensions continue. Current prices are approximately CAD 25/mt ($19/mt) higher than reported in early December.

East coast Canadian rebar prices are now in the range of CAD 950-1,000/mt ($716-$753/mt) ex-mill, reflecting an increase of about CAD 60/mt ($45/mt) since December. While some Canadian producers have expressed concern in media reports about an abundance of Turkish rebar imports coming to Canada instead of the US, where Section 232 tariffs on Turkish steel are still at an elevated level of 50 percent, Turkish rebar isn’t expected to hit Canada until mid-May due to seasonal demand trends in Q1 and overall apprehension from traders.

In the central Canadian, or Prairie region, buyers stocked up on imports before navigation routes closed for the winter, and as such, imports have little to no impact on current domestic prices. Canadian rebar offers the Prairie region are now around CAD 1,000-1,050/mt ($753-$791/mt) ex-mill, reflecting an increase of CAD 50/mt ($38/mt) since early December.

USD = CAD 1.33 (January 17)

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