Irsteel reported that as demand for longs is unlikely to strengthen in export markets soon and purchase prices for scrap are low, Turkish exporters have been forced to make reductions again. Although stocks of some foreign customers have run low they still prefer to wait or to book small lots of the material, in view of unstable political situation in the Middle Eastern and North African countries and attempting to knock down prices more substantially.
Nevertheless, Turkish producers have already started offering mainly rebar of May production and wire rod to be rolled in May June and thus market players believe quotations will hardly go down considerably in future. So at present Turkish rebar producers are quoting rebar at USD 655 per tonne to USD 665 per tonne FOB by USD 5 per tonne to 10 per tonne lower than a week ago. However some suppliers who earlier managed to sell sufficient volumes keep prices at higher level.
In particular this week deals mostly with Middle Eastern buyers for about 1,000 tonnes to 2,000 tonnes of the material have been closed at the lower end of the current price range. At the same time, Yemeni customers also plan to start purchasing Turkish material on depleted stocks, but most of them still stay in a wait and see mode due to political discord in the country. Iranian buyers have also returned to the market after holidays but they just estimate the current market situation so far. Nevertheless, Iranian domestic prices are much lower than import ones and thus Turkish suppliers will hardly succeed in selling material to this destination.
Customers from North Africa show almost no interest in new purchases due to military actions in Libya as well as attractive rebar offers of local producers in Egypt where demand is strengthening slowly after a political upheaval. Buying activity in the US market is still low and no rebar deals have been reported.
Mesh quality wire rod of late May early June production is priced at USD 690 per tonne to USD 705 per tonne FOB. As a result it is available by USD 35 per tonne to USD 40 per tonne higher than rebar due to mostly stronger buying activity in this segment in the domestic market. Demand in the export market has somewhat weakened which may be attributed to sufficient stocks of finished products. Only US and Iranian buyers are showing more interest to the products. So suppliers are trying hard to sell wire rod to those markers that are not traditional for them. In particular, offers of Turkish material to Central Asia and Central America are reportedly coming at USD 700 per tonne FOB though with no deals recorded.
Prices for semis have fallen by USD 5 per tonne to USD 10 per tonne in a week to USD 625 per tonne to USD 635 per tonne FOB which is only by USD 30 per tonne lower than local rebar quotations. At the same time foreign buyers report they are ready to buy billet only with at least USD 10 per tonne discounts. Square billet from Ukrainian mills and traders is available to Turkey at USD 615 per tonne to USD 630 per tonne C&F but buyers are interested in deals only at the bottom of the price range.