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Brazilian flat steel distributors' September shipments up 39% y-o-y

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Shipments by Brazilian independent flat steel distributors and service centers in September jumped 39% year on year to 403,100 mt, recent data from Inda, the national flat products distributors association, showed Oct. 20. Shipments were up 7.8% on month.

Out of the total in September, shipments of hot-rolled coils totaled 191,000 mt, up 39% on year, while zinc-coated flats sales volume totaled 120,700 mt, an increase of 75.5%.

Daily shipments by distributors were the highest for the month of September in seven years, totaling 19,200 mt, an increase of 39.1% on year.

Domestic purchases from mills in September were up 29.2% year on year to 316,700 mt, according to Inda. Month on month, domestic purchases decreased 2.6%.

Flat product inventories in the Brazilian distribution network stood at 703,500 mt at the end of September, down 7.9% from the end of August, while the inventory-turnover average closed September at 1.7 months of supply, the lowest of the past five years, the data showed. Historical average levels were around three months.

Broken down by product, the inventory-turnover average went down on month for all products, including hot-rolled-coil (1.8 months of supply), cold-rolled-coil (1.6 months), zinc-coated flat steel (27 days) and heavy plate (5.1 months).

“The low inventory level shows there is a perfect scenario for prices to continue climbing in November, thus the market turmoil may continue,” an analyst said.

Flat steel imports in September by distributors totaled 67,300 mt, down 22.5% year on year. When compared to August, imports were up 13.5%. While imports of HRC fell close to zero last month, external purchases of CRC went up by 43.6% on year to 12,641 mt and of zinc-coated flats increased on year by 3.8% to 50,845 mt.

For October, Inda expects purchases from mills to remain stable and shipments to decrease about 5% compared to September.

-- Priscilla Antunes

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