April 2012 | Stainless Steels
Chinese market weakness drags down demand: Asian Highlights
Demand from export markets has also fallen. This is both demand for hot and cold-rolled stainless, but also secondary demand through exported finished goods.
The Chinese stainless market is showing considerable, unseasonal weakness. Demand from major domestic sectors has come off. Automotive production at the start of the year returned to year-on-year growth, but just as quickly has turned towards contraction again. At the same time, construction has been stagnant or trending down for most of last year, but dropped to almost negative growth in March. At the same time demand from export markets has also fallen. This is both demand for hot and cold-rolled stainless, but also secondary demand through exported finished goods. The weak sentiment in Southern Europe and the resurgence of manufacturing in North America has reduced exports of white-goods and other productsWith demand weakening and the price of nickel coming off over the last week, stainless prices have been pulled down. Prices typically are off 1-5% for May delivery. In Wuxi prices are now down to their lowest levels since...
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