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Forecasts and market analysis based on price assessments from Fastmarkets MB and Fastmarkets AMM

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December 2019 | Stainless Steels


Prices to end 2019 at two-year lows: European Highlights


Slowing demand growth is the main culprit of this. European stainless steelmakers have been hit by slowing growth in global trade as well as a slowdown in demand from some key end-use sectors within Europe, in particular the automotive sector.

Apart from a slight improvement in market conditions during Q2 this year, 2019 has largely been a year of continued decline for Europe’s stainless steel industry, continuing a downward trend that began back in early 2018.

Slowing demand growth is the main culprit of this. European stainless steelmakers have been hit by slowing growth in global trade as well as a slowdown in demand from some key end-use sectors within Europe, in particular the automotive sector. Efforts to curb the effect of import competition, while in the process of being strengthened, have continued to be largely ineffective and import penetration of local markets remains roughly the same as in recent years (see chart).

December brings about little change in direction for the market and January will see recent downward pricing patterns continue. Prices on the most common, nickel-containing stainless steels have slumped once more on the back of...

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