Raw Steels MMI®: Steel Profits Coming From Consolidation, Not Price Increases

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Coiled steel for import

After a rare up week for the price of steel billet on the London Metal Exchange, Nucor was given regulatory approval and completed its purchase of Kentucky’s Gallatin Steel. Most steel prices remain stubbornly flat as profitability in the North American markets has come from consolidation and economies of scale rather than pricing.

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The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Raw Steels MMI® was the cash price of steel billet, which saw a 3.3% increase on the LME to $465.00 per metric ton. Also on the LME, the 3-month price of steel billet traded sideways last week, hovering around $455.00 per metric ton.

Chinese steel prices were flat for the week. The price of iron ore 58% fines from India hit a high price of CNY 840.00 ($136.77) and a low price of CNY 830.00 ($135.14) per dry metric ton. Chinese HRC traded sideways last week, hovering around CNY 3,030 ($493.34) per metric ton. At CNY 1,390 ($226.32) per metric ton, the price of Chinese coking coal did not change since the previous week. Following a steady week, prices for Chinese slab closed flat at CNY 3,480 ($566.61) per metric ton.

The 3-month price of the US HRC futures contract fell 1.0% over the past week to $618.00 per short ton. This was the fourth week in a row of declining prices. The price of US shredded scrap fell 0.8% over the past week to $361.00 per short ton. This was the third week in a row of declining prices. Last week, the US HRC futures contract spot price shifted slightly, rising by 0.3% to close at $642.00 per short ton.

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Korean steel prices were flat for the week. At KRW 240,000 ($224.53) per metric ton, the week finished with no movement for Korean steel scrap. Korean pig iron remained essentially flat from the previous week at KRW 635,000 ($619.69) per metric ton.

The Raw Steels MMI® collects and weights 13 global steel and raw material price points to provide a unique view into global steel price trends. For more information on the Raw Steels MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.

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