Italian rebar prices are beginning to fall after demand failed to resume as hoped following the winter holiday break. The market remains quiet, with few contracts being agreed and always for small volumes, market sources tell Kallanish.
Last week, mills were asking for €560/tonne ($607) base ex-works or €580/t base delivered but encountered stubborn resistance from buyers who adopted a wait-and-see attitude.
Distributors who spoke to Kallanish, however, say that while the market is sluggish, they have orders from the construction sector. Any price increase nevertheless results in sales halting as customers refuse to purchase rebar and mesh above a certain price level.
As order intake has been poor in recent weeks, some local producers have only partially resumed output this week. One has switched on one electric arc furnace and will restart the second in February.
Rebar makers are now asking for €510-520/t base ex-works. So far, rebar contracts in Italy are pegged at €500-510/t base ex-works. Including size extras, domestic prices have returned to the level €760-770/t ex-works, sources suggest.
Natalia Capra France