Japan’s crude steel output for the fiscal 2020 (April 2020-March 2021) may decline to around 80 million tonne from the 98.43 million tonnes for FY19, predicted Eiji Hashimoto, the newly-appointed chairman of the Japan Iron & Steel Federation (JISF) on June 16 after the first press conference as chairman.
The China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), the country’s governing body of all futures exchanges, has granted its approval, allowing three commodity exchanges to launch options contracts for six industrial products over June-August for trading, according to its official post on June 12.
The declines in China’s total fixed asset investment (FAI) and the funding in the property market slowed further by May, with the former down 6.3% on year over January-May as against the 10.3% on-year fall in the first four months, and the latter dipping 0.3% as against the 3.3% fall by April, according to the latest data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on June 15.
Japan’s machinery orders in April fell to a new low since May 2014 over the stagnated national economic activities, and continuing declines are expected in the coming months with the customers’ less willingness to invest, and related steel consumption, thus, will soften in autumn months, machinery company sources told Mysteel Global on June 12.
After the robust performance in April and May, China’s domestic steel demand may step onto a down slope starting June, and 2020 may end with a 4% on-year decline in total steel consumption, while the supply glut will be even more outstanding against the retreat in consumption in H2, Xu Xiangchun, Mysteel’s senior steel analyst, warned the market at the 3rd Bohai Economic Rim Steel Conference 2020 on June 3, the first large-scale virtual conference that Mysteel held with over 1,000 dial-ins and over 50,000 views.
For January-May, China’s foreign trade value declined more deeply by 8% on year than the 7.5% on-year fall for the first four months, as the foreign trade for May alone reversed down on month by 1.2% or down more sharply by 9.3% on year, according to the latest statistics in terms of the U.S. dollar from the country’s General Administration of Customs on June 7.
As part of the efforts to rescue the national economy from the negative impact of the COVID-19, China’s local authorities issued a total of Yuan 1.3 trillion ($182.6 billion) government bonds in May, or a record high month, to ensure adequate funding in infrastructure construction, according to a post by China’s Ministry of Finance (MoF) on June 3.
The world’s total steel demand this year is estimated to contract by 6.4% on year to 1.65 billion tonnes, mainly hit by the global crisis of COVID-19, according to the latest Short Range Outlook (SRO) from the World Steel Association (WSA or worldsteel) released at 1800 (Beijing time) on June 4.
Nippon Steel, Japan’s largest integrated mill, has delayed the banking of No.2 furnace at its Kimitsu works near Tokyo by about a month until mid-June, as it has not been able to fulfill the signed contracts by mid-May, the company’s spokeswoman explained on June 4.
Japan’s ordinary carbon steel exports fell by 23.2% on month to about 1.8 million tonnes for April, according to the data released by the Japan Iron & Steel Federation (JISF) on May 29, which might not have fully reflected the negative impact of the COVID-19 on the steel market, a JISF official admitted on June 1.
Japan’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for the country’s manufacturing industry fell to 38.4 for May, a new low since March 2009 or having declined for the three month mainly due to the impact of the COVID-19 on the series of industrial activities, according to the release from au Jibun Bank Corporation on June 1.
China’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for its manufacturing industry eased another 0.2 basis point on month to 50.6 for May, indicating the sector’s consistent return to the normality though at a slower pace from the impact of the COVID-19, according to the release from the country’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on May 31.
Chinese ferrous market insiders are showing little concern about the recent depreciation of Yuan against the U.S. dollar, saying the softening of the Chinese currency will make little difference to their business – either importing or exporting – given the other uncertainties impacting China and the wider world just now.