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The country produced 2.1068 million tpd of crude steel in the second ten days of October, down 1% from the preceding ten days, according to estimates released by China Iron & Steel Assn (Cisa) on Monday October 28.
Output of Cisa member mills – mainly medium-sized and large steelmakers – averaged 1.7117 million tpd in mid-October, down 2.97% from the first ten days of the month.
The decline in production was within market expectations, as the country’s steel market has been underperforming since the beginning of September, and some steelmakers are lacking the momentum to maintain high output levels.
Hot rolled coil prices in Shanghai market were at 3,430-3,460 yuan ($560-565) per tonne on October 25, 170-180 yuan ($28-29) per tonne lower compared with prices on August 30, according to Steel First’s price archive.
The prolonged sluggishness in the steel market and a squeeze on profits have led some mills to consider production cuts in a bid to support prices.
But large-scale mill maintenance or production cuts have not been heard so far.
Cisa member mills’ inventory totalled 13.788 million tonnes as at October 20, up 285,800 tonnes or 2% from October 10 levels.
China’s daily crude steel output continued to drop in mid-October with the steel market yet to see any sign of improvement.