Polish steel wire rod prices slightly down amid lack of activity; rebar slightly up on restocking

Polish steel wire rod prices widened downward, while the price for rebar in Poland slightly increased in the week to Friday September 29; the market was relatively quiet for both products after more active restocking in previous weeks, sources told Fastmarkets.

Wire rod
Polish mills continued pushing for higher prices in the assessment week. Thus, the offers for domestic steel wire rod (drawing quality) varied between 2,900 and 3,000 zloty ($659-682) per tonne CPT. According to market sources, those levels were not workable, and no major trading at such levels was heard.

“Consumption remained comparatively weak, and market activity was low,” a trading source told Fastmarkets. According to that source, deals were concluded at about 2,850 zloty per tonne CPT, but only for small tonnages.

A producer source estimated achievable prices for wire rod in Poland at 2,800-2,850 zloty per tonne CPT. The source confirmed that sales were comparatively slow this week after the more active restocking in mid-September.

“New restocking can be expected in October, and then slowdown in November again. This, combined with [a Polish local producer’s] decision to stop for maintenance in October, will stabilize prices [for wire rod],” the mill source said.

As a result, Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel wire rod (drawing quality), domestic, delivered Poland was 2,800-2,900 zloty per tonne on Friday, widening downward by 50 zloty per tonne from 2,850-2,900 zloty per tonne in the previous week.

The assessment was based on deals, the lower end of offers and market participants’ estimations of achievable values.

Drawing-quality wire rod offers from Germany to Poland were heard at about €610 ($643) per tonne CPT.

One Ukrainian mill was offering mesh-quality wire rod to Poland at about €590 per tonne CPT.

Polish domestic rebar was offered by local mills at about 2,850 zloty per tonne CPT, which equates to about 2,830 zloty per tonne ex-works, in the week to Friday September 29.

However, according to a distributor source, the bids for at least few hundred tonnes of rebar were seen between 2,750 and 2,770 zloty per tonne CPT, which nets back to about 2,730-2,750 zloty per tonne ex-works.

“After [mid-September] there was a spur of buying — now it can be seen it was mainly restocking. Demand from construction is better than a month ago, but it’s not enough to hold the current [rebar] prices on the market for long,” a trading source said.

A consumer source said during the assessment week that deals for rebar in Poland were concluded at about 2,780 zloty per tonne CPT, or about 2,760 zloty per tonne ex-works.

As a result, Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel reinforcing bar (rebar) domestic, exw Poland was 2,730-2,830 zloty per tonne on Friday, up by 10-20 zloty per tonne from 2,710-2,820 zloty per tonne the week before.

Despite improved buying, the availability of rebar in the domestic market was expected to be reduced in October due to a one-month maintenance stoppage at one of the key producers in Poland.

Therefore, sources expected rebar prices in Poland to flatten in October, although the downtrend could resume in November, with end-user demand unlikely to rebound due to seasonality.

Import offers for rebar to Poland were reported at about €610 per tonne from Moldova and Italy.

According to market sources, the high euro exchange rate versus the Polish zloty was making rebar imports uncompetitive for Polish buyers. Notably, €1 was traded at 4.63 zloty on September 29, according to the online currency converter Oanda.com. The Polish zloty was traded at 4.62 zloty to €1 on September 22, compared with 4.48 zloty to €1 on September 1.

Published by: Julia BolotovaDarina Kahramanova