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Prices of CR Austenitic Stainless Sheets in Asia to Rise in Feb.
The market of cold-rolled (CR) austenitic stainless steel sheets in the Asian region is predicted to be slow until mid-February as it enters the long Chinese New Year holidays in China. However, if the LME nickel prices hover at current $6.50 or so per pound, prices of CR austenitic stainless sheets are seen to rise from mid-February onward. It is because Taiyuan Iron & Steel (TISCO) of China has declared to raise its domestic prices for March shipment.

TISCO left unchanged its domestic prices of CR austenitic stainless sheets for February shipment despite that the LME nickel prices have rebounded since mid-January. As the backdrop, it is said that the company intends to raise its prices if the nickel price rises after the holidays to avoid annoying customers before the holidays. If the nickel price becomes more than $6.50, the company is supposed to be faced with an increase in prices at least by 600 CNY ($98). The current price of CR austenitic stainless sheets is 16,900 CNY ($2,770, including tax), and the price is thought to be raised to around 17,500 CNY.

The Korean and Taiwanese mills are also expected to set out soon its domestic prices for February shipment. In case of Korea, POSCO enters its periodic maintenance of various stainless facilities from February till July. For this reason, the company is in the difficult environment to revise its prices. Taiwan has imposed antidumping duties (26.5% for Korea and 20.2% for China) on CR austenitic stainless sheets from China and Korea. For this reason, its domestic market has turned around due to import from both countries having been stopped. YUSCO raised its domestic prices of austenitic ones by NT$1,000 ($33) and ferritic ones by NT$500 (a little less than $17) for January shipment. Those prices are recovering, and collapse of the prices is in a sticky situation.

In Europe as well, prices of CR austenitic stainless sheets are said to be rising from January. The US mills failed to raise their prices due to excess inventory while the European mills are said to have succeeded in an increase in base prices by 30 EUR.

Prices of CR austenitic stainless sheets in the Asian region maintain levelling off at $2,450 CFR partly due to before Chinese New Year. However, if TISCO raises its prices for March shipment, the overseas market prices will rise following this.
last modified : Tue 04 Feb, 2014 [13:00]
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