Severstal CFO Says Steel Prices Near Bottom; Steel Billet Collapses

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Severstal said on Thursday that “global steel prices may have reached their lowest point, though a recovery will be slow and average prices in 2014 are likely to be close to levels seen this year,” reports Reuters.

“‘We don’t really believe there is more room for going down, so we think on average maybe we have reached the bottom,’ Severstal’s chief financial officer, Alexey Kulichenko, said in an interview, warning the global industry’s persistent excess production would dampen improvements.”

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“With overcapacity in place, and with the behaviour that we observe, we don’t believe there will be quick sustainable growth in the short term. We think it will be a slow, gradual movement from this level up.”

The day’s biggest mover was the cash price of steel billet which dropped by 4.3 percent on Thursday, November 14 to close at $225.00 per metric ton on the LME. Also on the LME, the steel billet 3-month price showed little movement yesterday, hovering around $235.00 per metric ton.

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Chinese steel prices were flat for the day. The price of iron ore 58% fines from India were range bound. The price of Chinese HRC held steady. The price of Chinese coking coal saw essentially no change for the fifth day in a row.

The spot price of the US HRC futures contract rose 0.5 percent to $668.00 per short ton. The 3-month price of the US HRC futures contract held steady around $655.00 per short ton.