French longs prices may increase on pricey scrap

French rebar and other long steel prices are seen increasing this month by €10-15/tonne ($11-17), in line with increasing scrap values in the country, sources tell Kallanish.

Sales activity, like in all other European countries, however, is plodding along due to the holiday season across the continent and, specifically, in importers of French longs such as the Benelux and Germany. Distribution and end users are seen going back to purchasing in the coming days for September delivery before mills shut down for the August summer break.

Some import sales from Spanish and Italian producers have been reported over the past few days. Their prices are in line with domestic values as rebar makers in these countries are also keeping their values at high levels.

So far, domestic rebar is sold in France at €740-760/t ex-works. This includes €260-270/t size extras. Buyers in the south add between €40-50/t of transport to have material delivered from the north of the country.

Meanwhile, strong demand is reported for drawing- and mesh-quality wire rod, for which some tonnages have been taken out of the market due to the fire at the Thy-Marcinelle plant in Belgium (see Kallanish passim). Prices for drawing-quality wire rod in northern European countries are stable month-on-month at €900/t ex-works, and €30-50/t less in Italy.

In France and the Benelux area scrap prices are increasing by €15/t on average for the high grades.

Natalia Capra France