German steel production maintains declining trend

Production at German mills in July totalled 3.2 million tonnes of crude steel, which was around -5% less than in July 2018, Kallanish hears from steel federation WV Stahl. July thus confirmed the overall trend, with production in the first seven months of 2019 down by -5% year-on-year, totalling 23.9mt.

Notably, production of EAF-route mills in July dipped only -1.3% to 872,000t, while oxygen-route mills lost -6.6% to 16.8mt. This makes sense considering that oxygen mills make coil for the ailing automotive industry and are therefore suffering most from declining sales. Against that, EAF-based rebar mills have good sales because Germany’s construction industry is still flourishing.

Another factor is that EAF-based production in June and April saw relatively strong y-o-y declines. The federation did not offer any explanation for that, but it may have to do with longer temporary standstills, so that some EAF mills still have some catching up to do.