[Ferro-Alloys.com] Spot prices for flat-rolled steel in the US fell again this week as mills struggled to book new spot orders.
The Argus weekly domestic US hot-rolled coil (HRC) index fell for a second week in a row, moving down by $16.75/short ton (st) to $494.50/st ex-works Midwest on 11 indications from sell- and buy-side sources.
Lead times slipped to 3-4 weeks from 3-5 weeks.
The domestic US CRC assessment followed the fall in HRC pricing, dropping by $27.50/st to $670/st, while the HDG coil assessment fell by $24/st to $675/st. Lead times for both products slipped to 5-6 weeks from 6-7 weeks.
Market participants continued to avoid the spot market due to higher prices relative to contract pricing and sentiment that prices will continue to fall. Many are trying to buy what they need on their contracts with mills, which typically run $30-40/st lower than the spot market.
The spread between #1 busheling scrap delivered US Midwest mills and HRC selling prices was $208.79/st, down by 7.4pc compared to the prior week. Year-over-year, the spread is much lower than the $263.07/st spread recorded a year ago, which is down by 5.1pc compared to the year-over-year spread from last week.
HRC import prices into Houston fell by $10/st to $470/st ddp on lower offers from Mexico.
Futures prices in the CME HRC futures market mostly fell over the last week. August prices fell by $5/st to $518/st, while September futures prices slipped by $11/st to $524/st. October HRC futures fell by $4/st to $527/st. November HRC futures prices fell by $5/st to $527/st, while December prices fell by $4/st to $529/st. January HRC futures prices increased by $5/st to $539/st.
The Argus weekly domestic US plate assessment rose by $10.75/st to $595/st, as plate producers held offers at higher levels amid weak demand. Many market participants do no't expect plate demand to recover until October or later.
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