VIETNAM STEEL SCRAP: Buyers withdraw amid falling market

Buyers have started withdrawing from the spot market in key importer Vietnam in the week to Friday January 15 due to growing sentiment of a price downtrend, market sources told Fastmarkets.

Offers for Japanese H2 were at $460 per tonne cfr southern Vietnam and $465 per tonne northern Vietnam, compared with bids at $450-455 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

But buyers remained wary amid expectations of more price falls.

“Given the current price trend, it is much better to wait and see,” a buyer source in Vietnam told Fastmarkets.

Bids for bulk Japanese H1&H2 (50:50) were at $460-465 per tonne cfr Vietnam and offers were at $470 per tonne cfr Vietnam before the Kanto Tetsugen auction results.

Market sources feel a definite price downtrend has started and are not looking actively to purchase cargoes.

A major South Korean steel mill had lowered its bid for Japanese scrap, looking for H2 at ¥42,000 ($404) per tonne fob this week, causing sentiment to weaken in Asia. It also bid for HS and shredded scrap at ¥46,500 per tonne and Shindachi Bara at ¥47,500 per tonne.

Major Japanese mini-mill Tokyo Steel had also lowered its bid for ferrous scrap at its Utsunomiya plant by ¥1,000 per tonne to ¥42,000 per tonne.

“These have caused collection prices in the Tokyo Bay area to fall further to ¥40,000-41,000 per tonne,” a Japanese trader told Fastmarkets on Thursday January 14.

Buyers said they received offers for bulk Japanese HS at $482-483 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

Hong Kong-origin H1&H2 (50:50) was offered at $455-460 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

Domestic scrap of 3mm thickness and below was being sold at 9,000-9,200 Dong ($389.40-398.05) per kg.

Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for steel scrap H2, Japan-origin import, cfr Vietnam was $450-460 per tonne on Friday, widening downward by $10 per tonne from $460 per tonne a week earlier.

Offers for bulk cargoes of HMS 1&2 (80:20) from the United States fell continually throughout the week.

While traders said offers were at $490 per tonne cfr Vietnam mid-week, with bids at $480-485 per tonne cfr Vietnam, buyers said they had received offers at $480 per tonne cfr Vietnam for HMS 1&2 (80:20), at $485 per tonne cfr Vietnam for shredded and $490 per tonne cfr Vietnam by Friday.

Bids also fell to $473 per tonne cfr Vietnam by Friday.

Estimates that market prices were at $485 per tonne cfr Vietnam earlier in the week were no longer valid, sources said.

Fastmarkets’ weekly price assessment for deep-sea bulk cargoes of steel scrap, HMS 1&2 (80:20), cfr Vietnam was $473-480 per tonne on Friday, down by $5-12 per tonne week on week from $485 per tonne.

Containerized cargoes were offered at $445 per tonne cfr Vietnam, with bids at $440 per tonne cfr Vietnam in the earlier part of the week.

A transaction at $440 per tonne cfr Vietnam for US-origin material was heard concluded on Thursday. Market participants said negotiations for containerized cargoes were mainly at $440-445 per tonne cfr Vietnam.

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