March 10,2011

Daily Crude Steel Output Continued Climbing in Late Feb

By CSC staff,Shanghai

According to China Iron and Steel Association, daily average output of crude steel over Feb 21-28 rose 5.5% to 1.912mn (record high) from the previous 10 days. Average daily output in Feb was 1.823mn tons, up 7% MoM. Steel inventories at major trading markets reached 18.9mn tons, a historical high. Haven't seen much increase in end-user demand, some small steel producers have started lowering producer prices.

Daily output slumped from mid-April 2010 when the Chinese govt started to crack down on property speculation and only rebounded in Sep 2010 on regained confidence due partially to social housing. However, consumption of steel could be quite smooth, evidenced by relative stable cement demand. Robust steel output suggests that business confidence in China is not much impacted by monetary tightening. Why? Monetary tightening is more about normalization, while fiscal policy remains "proactive" .

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