European stainless coil prices rise

European stainless steel hot and cold rolled coil supply remains under pressure this month, with prices increasing due to higher month-on-month alloy surcharges for November and increasing base prices from European mills, sources tell Kallanish.

Final demand and consumption remain strong. All European coil producers are now quoting lead times between April and June 2022, depending on customer and contract. European stainless HRC is offered at €3,900-4,000/tonne ($4,520-4,636) delivered on average for March and April delivery. Stainless CRC contracts for European material are hovering at €4,100/t delivered on average, including alloy surcharges, depending on material quality and volumes.

Imported stainless coil from Asian countries is said to be waiting at Italian ports to be discharged on 1 January when quotas are renewed. The entire European value chain is slowed by long lead times at European mills, but margins remain high for both coil and flat products, with good profits both upstream and downstream. Stocks of flats and tubes are reported to remain relatively low in Western European countries.

The short supply and increasing prices are forecast to last through the end of the year and first quarter of 2022, sources believe.

Natalia Capra France