Mills in Northern Europe continued offering HRC in the range of €780-820 ($841-884) per tonne ex-works.
Market participants estimated tradable market levels at €750-770 per tonne ex-works, but trading was very limited and no major deals were heard.
A buyer source in the Benelux region confirmed these were the tradable price levels for now, but implied these levels might not persist for long.
“Trading activity is very low now and market participants are in wait-and-see mode,” the buyer source said, adding that mills may have to reconsider their offers if market activity does not pick up.
A second buyer source told Fastmarkets that trading was weak and there was no restocking due to low end-user demand.
“There is not a clear price trend for now; [it is at a] standstill,” the second buyer source said, adding that mills were refusing to cut prices due to good order books.
Fastmarkets calculated its daily steel HRC index, domestic, exw Northern Europe at €760 per tonne on Monday, down by €1 per tonne from €761.00 per tonne on February 2.
The index was up by €5.83 per tonne week on week and by €65.00 per tonne month on month.
HRC offers from Vietnam and Taiwan were heard in the range of €660-670 per tonne CFR to Antwerp, but booking interest was low due to depleted import quotas.
Fastmarkets calculated its corresponding daily steel HRC index, domestic, exw Italy at €752.50 per tonne on Monday, down by €2.50 per tonne compared with €755.00 per tonne on February 2.
The index was down by €0.83 per tonne week on week and up by €62.92 per tonne month on month.
Italian mills continued offering HRC at €780 per tonne delivered, which nets back to about €765-770 per tonne ex-works. One mill was heard offering HRC at €800 per tonne delivered (€780 per tonne ex-works).
But buyer sources indicated workable market levels in the range of €740-755 per tonne ex-works.
Only one buyer source considered a higher level of €765 per tonne to be tradable. No major deals were heard in the market.
“Demand is not strong. [We see] moderate buying [mainly] case by case,” a third buyer source told Fastmarkets.
Asian HRC import offers to Italy were heard in the range of €635-660 per tonne CFR, according to the third buyer source.
The lower end was not confirmed by other market sources, however.
The third source also said that import prices at €660-670 per tonne CFR offered from Egypt to Italy could be achievable.
HRC offers from Japan, Taiwan and Vietnam to Italy were in the range of €670-680 per tonne CFR, a fourth buyer source said. Even lower offers for Asian material were heard at €655 per tonne CFR.
Import offers from India to Italy were heard at €690 per tonne CFR.