Steel import prices tumble in South America as Covid-19 pandemic dents demand

Flat-rolled steel import prices dipped in South America over the past week, after actions designed to contain the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in a reduction in the expected import orders for May shipment.

Large importers, including Chile, Peru and Colombia, have been enforcing near-nationwide lockdowns, thereby reducing demand for steel and the need for imports.
In Brazil, where customer interest was already low because of the Real's diminishing value against the US dollar, concerns about consumption in the coming months were also slowing down activity.
“Chile and Peru are both largely refraining from purchasing, and Colombia has pretty much halted,” one Brazil-based trader source said. “We are out in the market for bargain deals, but even then I [do not] believe there will be many orders.”

Most market participants expect volumes for May shipments to...

Published

Renato Rostás

March 30, 2020

16:04 GMT

São Paulo