Production costs may push up French rebar prices

French rebar prices remain stable compared to December but despite the end of the holiday on 2 January, many buyers are only now reopening and executives are resuming work.

The market has been particularly quiet in the first week of January while the rest of Europe was still on holiday. Before the Christmas break, in December, France finally shook off the long-lasting rebar stagnation. Distributors tell Kallanish that overall, the month of December resulted in good sales after a very slow beginning. Both producers and distributors are expected to post record results.

Some restocking and an improved level of demand is expected in the national and export markets in January. Today the issue carbon and stainless steelmakers are facing is high energy prices which is forcing some to work nights or only a few days per week.

Scrap prices are likely to increase significantly this month in France like in other European countries and energy is expected to remain fairly expensive. If rebar demand surges, some moderate hikes for rebar and other long products may be necessary, some sources believe.

Rebar prices remain steady for the moment. Including size extras, domestic contracts hover at €730-750/tonne ($766-788) ex-works, sources suggest.

Natalia Capra France