FOCUS: How would a second wave of Covid-19 affect the European steel market?

The numbers of cases of Covid-19 infection have begun to grow once more across Europe, and Fastmarkets has heard the fears of various market participants about the consequences that any new restrictions or lockdowns could have for the steel sector.

Earlier this year, when the Covid-19 pandemic first took hold across Europe, many countries brought in strict nationwide lockdowns, which had the effects of halting or reducing steel production, curtailing construction projects and closing automotive plants.
Since the lockdowns have been removed across the continent, business activity has slowly restarted in the various steel sectors, although the effects continue to be felt by some.
Long steel
In the European long steel market, many participants believed that a second wave of Covid-19 would not trigger the sort of nationwide lockdowns seen in spring, because the economy “was already hurt badly and won’t survive total shutdown all over again.”

“In our country,” an Italian mill source said, “there are fewer cases than in France, Spain and the UK. If there is a lockdown, the general feeling among companies is that the government would not halt industrial production [as it did in...

Published

Maria Tanatar

Carrie Bone

Julia Bolotova

October 13, 2020

08:00 GMT

London, Dnipro