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Prices of CR Austenitic Stainless Sheets in Asia to $2,300 CFR Level
Price drop of cold-rolled (CR) austenitic stainless steel sheets in the Asian region has not cease to fall. Dragged down by the LME nickel price being the lower end of $6 per pound, CR sheet prices become the level of $2,300 CFR.

Taiyuan Iron & Steel of China recently noticed its domestic price of CR austenitic stainless sheets for July shipment to each customer. It was to reduce them by 700 CNY ($111) per ton to 16,100 CNY ($2,555 including tax). That excluding tax was 2,184 in dollars, and there is a possibility for a price of CR austenitic stainless sheets to fall below $2,000.

From the beginning of this year, it already dropped by as much as several hundred dollars, and the Korean and Taiwanese mills are reported to be proceeding with negotiations at the level of $2,300 CFR with markdowns of more than $100 from that in May. The Japanese mills were in a state to be open but not doing business in May and only continued to keep a wait-and-see attitude. Besides the Japanese customers and customers with long-term trading subject to linkage to the LME price, from others, the mills receive inquiries but are difficult to conclude contracts. Not only for the Asian region but also for Europe, there seems no customers to take up negotiations due to unstable prices of products, and a sense of stagnation is created in the market.

In case of the Chinese mills, many of the stainless sheet mills are believed to be using nickel pig iron not only ferronickel. The market prices of nickel pig iron are not necessarily apparent but it is reported that it has a cost advantage by 1,000 CNY ($159) compared to ferronickel. Seen from this, there is a possibility for them to have been losing money even if they use nickel pig iron considering the price drop range of products since the beginning of this year.

The Asian stainless sheet mills give up stopping price drop of products and are strengthening to protect the domestic markets. It is to protect the domestic market conditions by filing an antidumping (AD) case. The price level of CR austenitic stainless sheets in Thailand is said to be $2,500 CFR by implementation of the AD measures. It is far higher than that in other Asian countries. Seeing this, besides Taiwan that has already commenced investigation, Vietnam also seems to file an AD case. The conditions in Japan are not satisfied as its domestic prices are exceeding those of export, and therefore, it will be difficult to protect its domestic market.
last modified : Fri 28 Jun, 2013 [11:03]
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