A lack of local availability, plus anti-dumping measures on some third-country imports into the European Union, have further pushed up hot rolled coil prices in Western Europe.
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Hot rolled coil price surge
Offers for the flat rolled product from Western European mills are now €850-900 ($1,015-$1,070) per tonne ex works for May rolling and June delivery, traders told MetalMiner. That moved up by an average one-third from the €750 ($894) that producers were offering in early February.
Production cuts by Western European mills could, however, make it difficult to secure finished product at those times and prices.
“You cannot buy a single tonne,” one trader said about acquiring hot rolled coil from Western European mills at present.
Rises in raw material prices and reported difficulties in securing ferrous scrap are also pushing up prices, a second trader said.
Hot rolled coil is used in construction applications. The flat rolled product is also used as feedstock for welded pipe production. It’s also used for rolling cold rolled coil and and to produce further downstream.
Anti-dumping measures, Chinese demand
Also supporting prices on the Western European domestic market are EU anti-dumping measures on HRC from Turkey and China. In addition, high demand for finished product from China has offered support, sources said.
“The Chinese [economy] is doing very well,” the first trader said.
High hot rolled coil demand in Southeast Asia for building and infrastructure projects is also supporting Western European prices, sources noted.
Imports have come from India and Japan. Transactions for hot rolled coil concluded at $890-$900 cost and freight (CFR) Europe with tentative delivery in May and June, the first trader said.
Rising freight prices and the difficulty of securing ships have also kept import prices high, sources said.
The current situation will continue to support the upward trend for hot rolled coil. That is the case on both the domestic and import markets, sources said.
“I don’t know how long this trend will last,” an additional trader said.
The first trader confirmed that prices would likely continue to rise. However, he hinted that the market might be less willing to accept further increases.
“It looks like it will continue to rise, but everybody is complaining,” the first source added.
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