CIS export billet prices weaken

Friday, 02 August 2019 17:41:10 (GMT+3)   |   Istanbul

Ex-CIS square billet prices have moved down since mid-July, driven by low demand, although iron ore and scrap prices remain high.

Key billet suppliers from the CIS keep trying to hold their export offers for September production above $420/mt FOB. However, the workable level is estimated at no higher than $410-415/mt FOB. “It is possible to find limited volumes at this level, but most buyers are targeting lower, like $405/mt FOB,” a source said. In particular, bids from Turkey are at around $420-425/mt CFR, and bids from Egypt at $430-435/mt CFR, SteelOrbis has been informed. It is worth mentioning that billet from the east of Ukraine has reportedly been available at $400-405/mt FOB this week, with some offers heard at $422-425/mt CFR Aliaga.

CIS-based suppliers say demand is weak overal, partly as slack longs sales limit the requirements for billets. Some movement may be seen after August 4 if the Administrative Court of Egypt remains firm regarding its decision to eliminate the billet safeguard duty. However, even then the positive effect is not expected to be quick. “Today, in order for the market to move, either raw material prices have to go down or rebar sales have to go up. I don’t see how the second one can be possible,” a trader told SteelOrbis.

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