Steel plate prices stabilize in Italy, Northern Europe amid sufficient trading activity

Steel plate prices in Italy and Northern Europe flattened in the week to Wednesday September 28 amid sufficient daily demand, while the availability of cheap slab has had no effect on the Italian market yet, sources told Fastmarkets.

Sources reported that trading activity in Italy’s plate market has been quite good during the month of September.

Local re-rollers are reportedly sold out until mid-November.

During the assessment week, transactions for small volumes of steel plate with end-November/early-December delivery were reported at €970-1,000 ($933-962) per tonne exw, which is largely unchanged from the preceding week.

The downtrend in import slab market has had no effect on the local plate prices so far, sources said.

Notably, South Korea-origin slab was offered to Italy at $580-610 per tonne cfr during the week to September 23, depending on the volume.

In fact, sources said that they are currently using slab bought at higher prices, while high energy costs in Europe were offsetting any benefit of being able to acquire lower-cost slab.

The average monthly wholesale electricity price in Italy was around €431.47 per megawatt hour in September, up sharply from a monthly average of €158.59 per megawatt hour in September 2021, according to local energy service company Gestore dei Mercati Energetici.

Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel domestic plate, 8-40mm, exw Southern Europe, was €970-1,000 per tonne on Wednesday, unchanged from the preceding week.

In the secondary market, steel plate was offered and traded at €1,050-1,070 per tonne cpt, but traded volumes were quite limited, sources said.

Northern Europe
Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel domestic plate, 8-40mm, exw Northern Europe, was at €1,100-1,150 per tonne on Wednesday, also unchanged week on week.

The assessment reflects the lower end of offers, deals and market sources’ estimates of achievable prices.

Offers from integrated mills in the region were reported at €1,150-1,200 per tonne exw, while buyers’ estimations of tradeable prices were heard at €1,070-1,100 per tonne exw.

Trading activity in the region was still subdued, with mainly small tonnages traded, sources said.

“Buyers tend to concentrate on selling off their devaluing stocks rather than buying new tonnages,” a local trading source said.

Local integrated mills have good order books, mainly thanks to projects, including those involving offshore wind turbines, shipbuilding and bridge construction.

Alternatively, demand from mechanical engineering industries was quite low.

Italy-origin plate was sold to Germany at €1,050-1,070 per tonne cpt during the week.

Published by: Julia Bolotova