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Stable prices expected in US; European outlook lower - TSI - 4 April 2012

Price expectations of US & European companies

©SBB 2012

% of respondents

 

Higher prices

Unchanged

Lower prices

US companies

18%

64%

18%

Europe companies

26%

38%

36%

Almost two-thirds of companies in North America expect steady prices in the next three months, according to the latest carbon steel market survey results from The Steel Index (TSI) released this week, with equal numbers anticipating higher or lower price levels. More respondents in Europe expect lower prices than higher in the next three months. All US companies foresee better or steady demand, although the majority of European companies expect unchanged offtake.

64% of respondents in US expect prices will be stable, up from 29%, while 18% expect prices to be higher and 18% foresee lower. The number of companies in Europe expecting lower prices rose to 36% from 27%, with 26% predicting higher prices. (See table.) 29% of companies globally expect lower prices, with 27% foreseeing higher, down from 31%.

Among US companies, 32% predict higher offtake in the next three months and 68% expect stable demand, up from 58%. 54% of European respondents expect steady demand, down from 66%, while 23% predict either higher or lower offtake. Globally, 58% of companies expect stable demand, down from 63%, with 27% foreseeing higher offtake and 15% expecting lower demand.

For European companies, 14% noted higher stocks, up from 10%, and 59% had stable stock levels compared to the previous week. An unchanged 14% of US companies noted higher inventory, with 43% showing stable inventory. 54% of respondents globally reported stable steel inventories, down from 61%, while 31% had lower stocks, up from 27%.

More information about TSI, like Steel Business Briefing a unit of Platts, is available on its website www.thesteelindex.com .

 

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