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China's domestic, export CRC prices continue downwards - 24 May 2012

Chinese domestic cold rolled coil prices have continued trending downward this week, especially in Guangdong’s Lecong steel market where the price decline has accelerated on fears of rising stocks and poor prospects, dealers said Wednesday. In parallel, the falling domestic prices and sluggish overseas demand have seen Chinese CRC export prices weaken too, they said.

Prices for SPCC 1.0mm CRC in Lecong have dropped by about RMB 60/t ($9.5/t) from last Friday, taking the lowest offers there currently to around RMB 4,760/t ($753/t) with VAT, Lecong dealers said.

Over the same period, prices of similar materials in Shanghai have dipped to RMB 4,770-4,850/t with 17% VAT, down RMB 30/t. Since the beginning of this month, the Lecong and Shanghai dealer prices have already decreased by about RMB 200/t and RMB 130/t respectively.

Traders in Lecong told Platts Steel Business Briefing that the rise in CRC inventories in their dealer market concerns them. They see no sign of demand picking up over June-August period yet the steel producers are showing no inclination to cut production either.

Despite the fact that most major steel mills have lowered their CRC list prices for June or offered extra discounts, traders intend to keep bookings at a low volume, Platts SBB is told.

In the export market a northern China steel mill is offering 1.0mm CRC at around $680/t fob, down $20/t from earlier this month. Exporters said transaction prices could be a few dollars lower. Higher offers for CRC have also been heard at around $690/t fob in the market, but thin trades have also pulled real transaction prices down, sources said.


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