Local long steel prices in Italy trend sideways in sluggish market

Tuesday, 07 December 2021 17:52:02 (GMT+3)   |   Brescia

Although Italian rebar producers have been aiming at prices around €500-520/mt base level at least (equal to €760-780/mt ex-works), local transaction prices have not improved in the past two weeks, remaining at €490-500/mt base levels (750-760/mt ex-works). According to sources, domestic demand has slowed down due to both seasonal factors and high prices. "Buyers can afford to wait. They had undertaken commitments when rebar prices were much lower, so now they are postponing construction projects as much as possible," one source commented. At the same time, mills are bearing high costs for scrap, energy and transportation, which is why prices are not expected to decrease anytime soon. The situation is not much different in other European countries, a producer's representative explained: "€750/mt is a high price also for buyers in Germany, Poland and Hungary. Many rebar processors have not delivered yet the orders they had obtained when rebar prices were much lower, because they hoped that early next year prices would decrease, but they won't, and they'll lose money."

As for exports by sea, Italian producers' offers are at €690-700/mt FOB, although demand is currently weak as buyers had already bought some material at such prices in the past weeks.

Meanwhile, wire rod prices have remained stable as well in the Italian domestic market. According to sources, drawing quality wire rod (SAE1006) prices are still at around €780-800/mt delivered to customer, i.e., unchanged in the past two weeks. The same mill representative said that the production of drawing quality wire rod is uneconomical currently, since busheling prices are high owing to the fact that this type of scrap is lacking with automotive having slowed down activities in past months.

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