CIS slab prices plateau as demand persists

Posted on 02 November 2021

Black Sea merchant slab export prices are resisting growth amid China's weakening flat products market dampening Asian demand, and Turkey booking large volumes in the last three weeks.

Asian demand continues to lag, exacerbated by inter-regional offers at $710-720/tonne cfr. Russian slab was initially offered at $750-760/t cfr but bids were much lower, and no trade resulted, market participants tell Kallanish.

Sales to Turkey reached $760/t cfr last week for at least one lot, but buying interest subsided towards the end of the week. Participants estimate around 200,000 tonnes of slab was booked by Turkish re-rollers in the last few weeks for January arrival.

On the back of high volumes of sales to Turkey, European buyers also booked CIS slab, at around $765-770/t cfr. Demand from Europe is moderate, but stable, and with Brazilian material not workable at this price level, the CIS is the only option.

Brazilian slab offers rose to $700-720/t fob, still primarily aimed at the US market for first-quarter deliveries, in a stable ascending trend, and with no major price increases expected. 

With December-casting material moving relatively quickly, producers are not desperate to sell, and offers remain at $720-740/t fob Black Sea, depending on destination. Most re-rollers’ slab stocks are still low, and more bookings are expected this week, participants say.

Source : Kallanish