|19 August, 2019

Tokyo Steel keeps product prices steady in Sept for 2nd month

Second month the company has kept prices unchanged for all its steel products

TOKYO - Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co Ltd, Japan's top electric-arc furnace steelmaker, on Monday said it would hold its steel product prices steady in September because of high inventories at home and a weaker overseas market.

That is the second month the company has kept prices unchanged for all its steel products, including its main H-shaped beams.

For September, prices for steel bars, including rebar, will remain at 64,000 yen ($602) a tonne, while H-shaped beams will stay at 85,000 yen ($780) a tonne.

"Domestic supply flow has been slow due to the summer holiday season, but local inventories have started to come down slowly," Tokyo Steel Managing Director Kiyoshi Imamura told reporters at a briefing.

"We expect local demand to pick up in the October-March second-half, although it may take some time to see a further reduction in local stockpiles," he said.

Overseas demand, meanwhile, is expected to stay flat, with the prolonged U.S.-China trade row and intensifying geographical and political risks in some areas, Imamura added.

Tokyo Steel's pricing is closely watched by Asian rivals such as South Korea's Posco and Hyundai Steel, and China's Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd (Baosteel).

($1 = 106.3100 yen)

(Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Joseph Radford) ((Yuka.Obayashi@thomsonreuters.com; +813-6441-1798; Reuters Messaging: yuka.obayashi.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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