Economy, Business And Markets

Longs Prices Keep Falling

Longs Prices Keep FallingLongs Prices Keep Falling

Iranian steelmakers still see no demand for longs, so they have had to step back again.

Besides, Iranian suppliers do not expect the domestic market to improve in the next few weeks due to seasonal and other reasons, Metal Expert, a Ukraine-based provider of news and analysis on steel products and steelmaking raw materials industries, reported.

Positions of Iranian rebar producers have weakened substantially over the past month in view of steadily declining demand. Rebar is now offered to local buyers at 13,578-14,587 rials/kg ($379-408/ton) EXW. At the same time, steel mills do not count on an upturn in buying activity due to the seasonal factor, particularly lower temperature and rainy period, which affect already slow construction activities.

Weak finished steel segment puts pressure on billet suppliers. Semis quotes have decreased to 443-505 rials/kg ($14-15/ton) over the period under review. Billet from Esfahan Steel Company and Iran Alloy Steel Company is offered to Iranian buyers at 11,330-11,927 rials/kg ($317-333/ton) EXW.

Given sluggish domestic demand, the largest supplier–Khouzestan Steel Company–is more focused on exports now.

“Domestic demand shows no signs of recovery both in billet and finished steel segments due to the economic situation in Iran and seasonal factor,” an Iranian producer told Metal Expert without being identified.

Although KSC makes no offers in the physical market, the company sold 74,300 tons on Iran Mercantile Exchange at 12,500 rials/kg ($349/ton) ex-works over a month. As for rebar sales, ESCO shipped less than 2,000 tons at 14,300-14,600 rials/kg ($400-408/ton) EXW over the same period, but marketed about 110,000 tons of beam and rebar in a the mixed lot, some rebar volumes were also sold by Azarbaijan Steel at 14,000 rials/kg ($391/ton) EXW.

Currently, there is almost no demand for billet imports in Iran.