European mills aim for higher CRC, HDG prices despite limited demand

European steelmakers were targeting higher prices for cold-rolled and hot-dipped galvanized coil in the week to Jan. 18 despite muted interest of the buyers in the material.

The upwards attempts of the mills were driven by combination of hot-rolled coil rise in Europe, reduced coil supply due to production cuts, anticipated demand recovery as well as full order books of the mills. This, however, failed to spur buyers’ interest in the material.

Muted end consumer demand and uncertain outlook supported hesitance of the buyers to stock CRC and HDG.

“The mills want higher prices, but truth is all we have to back it up is restocking activity and stopped equipment,” a distributor said. “Restocking will end, and the buyers are not willing to risk and buy bogger volumes as they know end users are not very active. And with current geopolitical and economic situation risks are too high and outlooks are uncertain.”

Platts assessed domestic hot-dipped galvanized coil prices in Northwest Europe at Eur875/mt ex-works Ruhr on Jan. 18, up by Eur55/mt week on week.

German buyers estimated tradable value at Eur900/mt ex-works Ruhr and reported offers at Eur900-950/mt ex-works Ruhr. A steelmaker source, however, reported offers at Eur850/mt ex-works Ruhr.

The assessment for domestic cold-rolled coil prices in the region was down Eur10/mt on week and Eur25/mt on day to Eur825/mt ex-works Ruhr.

The assessment moved down as a steelmaker reported offers at Eur800/mt ex-woks Northern Europe.

Platts assessed domestic prices for hot-dipped galvanized coil in Southern Europe at Eur830/mt ex-works Italy on Jan. 18, up by Eur50/mt week on week. The assessment was based on tradable values heard at Eur800-850/mt ex-works and offers at Eur840-850/mt ex-works.

The assessment for domestic cold-rolled coil prices in the region also increased – up by Eur45/mt on week to Eur815/mt ex-works Italy, reflecting tradable values reported at Eur800-830/mt ex-works Italy.

Platts is part of S&P Global Commodity Insights.

— Maria Tanatar