Black Sea slab spot prices continue to erode

  • Tuesday, 14:21 18/09/2018 .
  • Slab prices in the Black Sea spot market dropped below the $500/mt FOB level last week, sources told S&P Global Platts.

    The market is well supplied, with most mills from the CIS present. A buyer in Europe noted that CIS producers were trying to sell October-November production, which is after planned maintenance outages so shortages are unlikely. He added that Brazilian and even Canadian slab were available.

    In Turkey, buyers were looking for CIS material at $505-$510/mt CFR, which equated to $485-$490/mt FOB Black Sea, a Turkish trader reported. A source close to a Russian mill confirmed the same prices but added that business was not finalized yet.

    Another Russian producer was more bearish. "We haven't found buyers wishing to pay $505-$510/mt [CFR Turkey]," said a source there. This is closer to the actual asking prices targeted by sellers rather than bids from buyers, the company noted.

    Aggressive expectations of Turkish buyers for CIS slab imports are directly linked to the Turkish coils market, where hot-rolled coils softened $15/mt during the week to around $585/mt ex-works.

    A Ukrainian seller said its last sales were fixed over a week ago at $535/mt CFR Italy, which implied $500-$510/mt FOB Sea of Azov. This price level is no longer available since the market turned further downward, according to other sources.