EU apparent steel consumption ended 2016 on a stronger note than had been forecast. Steel demand in the fourth quarter grew by 7.10% year-on-year.
One factor in this was a higher gain in real steel consumption. Another factor was that, while steel inventories normally fall significantly in the fourth quarter, in the last three months of 2016 they fell by much less than was expected, which left inventory levels higher than normal.
Both domestic and overseas steelmakers benefited from the rise in demand.
For domestic deliveries, the growth of 2.3% was the first significant improvement in year-on-year growth for almost three years, Eurofer...