Trading activity in the European hot-rolled coil was low on July 21 due to the traditional slowdown in the second half of summer.
Weaker sentiment prevailed in the coil market due to soft end-user demand and a blurry outlook for September.
Attempts by some mills to increase prices were rejected by buyers. Reduced domestic availability caused by scheduled maintenances at the mills has not supported domestic prices, sources said.
“Central European mills and Italian mills tried to increase offers, but the buyers clearly aim for significantly low prices, even below the previous deals,” a service center source said.
Demand from end-user industries, with the exception of automotive, has been soft and the situation is unlikely to change after the summer lull, sources said.
“Automotive was doing fine, but there are concerns that we have benefited from delayed demand and that consumption would be lower,” a trader said.
Platts assessed domestic prices for hot-rolled coil in Northwest Europe at Eur655/mt ex-works Ruhr on July 21, unchanged on the day.
Market participants estimated tradable values at Eur650-670/mt ex-works Ruhr, with the majority of tradable values reported at Eur650/mt ex-works Ruhr.
Offers from Benelux have been heard at Eur620/mt delivered Germany. Platts assessed domestic prices for hot-rolled coil in South Europe down by Eur5/mt on the day at Eur645/mt ex-works Italy on July 21.
Tradable values were heard at Eur620-650/mt ex-works Italy and limited deals for smaller lots of material were reported at Eur650/mt ex-works Italy. The euro to US dollar exchange rate has kept import offers more competitive.
Offers of HRC from Asia were heard at Eur600-610/mt CIF Antwerp and at Eur580-600/mt CIF Italy.
Author – Maria Tanatar