The Italian coil market is struggling to increase prices due persisting conditions of uncertainty. Final demand remains patchy and service centres have not yet managed to pass on price increases to their customers with no significant change from last week and last month.
Local producers are trying to defend the price level of €500/tonne ($564.9/t) base ex-works implemented in February. Despite this, HRC transaction prices remain between €470-480/t base ex-works, market participants tell Kallanish.
Service centres’ stocks are not high. Paradoxically, they are refusing to purchase at increased prices and are trying to resist buying for as long as they can. "Some of our colleagues bought Turkish HRC at $20/t less compared to the beginning of last week. We do not think that the market conditions are right to implement increases in coil prices at least in the Italian market where the economy is sluggish and final demand too unreliable. Nobody pays €500/t today for HRC," a source at a service centre says.
According to another commentator, Turkish HRC was sold in both Italy and Spain last week at $520/t fob. This represents a decline compared to the price of $540-550/t fob of the beginning of March, Kallanish notes.
Meanwhile demand for hot dipped galvanized and cold rolled coils is also low while prices remain stable week-on-week. Contracts for both HDG and CRC are at €540-550-560/t base ex-works, sources reveal.