Sat, Jul 27, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Chung Hung raises steel prices, demand still low

By Camaron Kao  /  Staff reporter

Chung Hung Steel Corp (中鴻鋼鐵), a subsidiary of China Steel Corp (CSC, 中鋼), announced yesterday it is increasing its product prices for next month’s shipments, the first increase since it cut prices two consecutive times for shipments in May and last month.

Prices of hot-rolled sheets and coils, and cold-rolled coils are to increase by NT$400 (US$13.39) per tonne, while the price of hot-dipped, zinc-galvanized sheets is to rise by NT$500 per tonne, the company said.

Meanwhile, prices for the company’s steel products for export in September will also be increased by between US$10 and US$20 based on the export destination, the company said.

Chung Hung vice president Li I-hsiang (李逸湘) said the move followed that of its larger Chinese peers. He expects prices in the region could stay at high levels as long as Chinese mills do not lower prices.

Li did not provide an outlook for the company’s sales this year, citing market uncertainties, but higher steel prices may ease the pressure of the rising cost of iron ore for the company.

Kao Hsing Chang Iron & Steel Corp (高興昌), one of Chung Hung’s major clients, said Chung Hung’s prices are still lower than China Steel’s, but demand in the steel market is still low.

“We do not see rebounding market demand and we expect demand in the second half of the year to be as low as in the first half,” a company official, who declined to be named, said by telephone yesterday.

From January through last month, Chung Hung posted revenue of NT$20.46 billion, down 12.46 percent from NT$23.38 billion the previous year because of low demand and low prices.

Chung Hung shares declined 0.95 percent to close at NT$8.34 yesterday.

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