Steel Mills News

16 Mar 2020

China Steel Futures Rise on Demand Optimism

© junrong/AdobeStock

Chinese steel futures hit their highest in nearly two months on Monday on signs of a recovery in demand, and as policymakers worldwide rolled out more stimulus measures to cushion global economies reeling from the coronavirus pandemic.The U.S. Federal Reserve cut interest rates by 100 basis points on Sunday, in line with a global policy effort to stave off a steep economic downturn as increasing lockdowns and travel bans hit businesses across the globe.The central bank of China on Friday cut the cash that banks must hold as reserves for the second time this year…

12 Mar 2020

Baltic Index Edges Up On Stronger Rates

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index rose on Thursday, helped by higher rates for capesize and supramax vessels.The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels that ferry dry bulk commodities, rose 2 points, or 0.3%, to 633 - its highest level since Jan. 21.The capesize index fell 5 points to -355.However, average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000 tonne-180,000-tonne cargoes including iron ore and coal, rose by $122 to $2…

06 Jan 2020

Baltic Index Falls to 8-Month Low

© Infinitum Produx / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index fell to its lowest level since April on Monday, weighed down by weaker vessel demand across all segments.* The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels that ferry dry bulk commodities, declined 63 points, or 6.9%, to 844 points, its lowest level since April 23.* The capesize index fell 119 points, or 7.9% to 1,388 - its lowest since May 10.* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170…

22 Nov 2019

BIMCO: Chinese Steel Production Declines

Source: BIMCO

Chinese steel production dropped by one million (1m) tons, a decline of 1.2%, compared to October last year. China produced 81m tonnes of crude steel in October 2019. This is the first decline in steel production year-on-year (y-o-y) since December 2017.The story unfolds quite differently when looking at the accumulated volumes of crude steel production. In total, China has produced 829m tonnes of crude steel through the first 10 months of 2019, an increase of 6% when compared to the same period last year.In fact…

19 Nov 2019

Baltic Index Down On Lower Capesize Rates

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The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, extended losses to a fourth straight session on Tuesday on tepid demand for capesize vessels.* The Baltic index, which reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, fell 34 points, or 2.5%, to 1,304, its lowest since June 25.* The capesize index dropped 60 points, or 2.3%, to 2,543 points.* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180…

16 Oct 2019

Baltic Index at One-week Trough as Demand Sags

File Image: A recently delivered K Line Coal Carrier. CREDIT: K Line

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, fell to a one-week low on Wednesday, on weaker demand for all vessel segments.The Baltic index, which reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, was down 1 point at 1,897, extending losses to a fourth session.The capesize index fell 10 points, or 0.3%, to 3,194. The average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal…

27 Sep 2019

Baltic Index Falls on Sluggish Capesize Demand

© Aleksey Stemmer / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, dropped on Friday and recorded its steepest percentage fall in two months, as Chinese steel mill restrictions continued to drag down capesize rates.* The Baltic index, which reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, declined 106 points, or 5.4%, to 1,857 points. For the week, the index dropped 13.3%, its worst week in nearly eight months.* The capesize index fell 263 points, or 7.3%, to 3,338 points.

03 Sep 2019

Baltic Index Up for Again on Firmer Capesize Demand

File Image: AdobeStock / © Lucasz Z

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index rose for a ninth-straight session on Tuesday, holding on to a near nine-year peak touched last week, helped by stronger capesize demand.The Baltic index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities, gained 59 points, or 2.4%, to 2,501, a level last seen in November 2010. The capesize index rose 203 points, or 4.4%, to 4,862 points, its highest since June 2010.Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, rose $1,418 to $37,519.

17 Jul 2019

St. Louis Regional Freightway: Prepare now for Lock Closures

File Image: St. Louis Regional Freightway

Lock Closures Starting on the Illinois Waterway This Summer May Result in  More Freight Flowing Through St. Louis Region.Businesses that move or handle commodities on the Illinois Waterway system are being encouraged to start making alternative plans due the scheduled closure of locks on that inland waterway system. With a two-week closure planned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers beginning as early as August 2019 and closures of 90 to 120 days expected in the summers of 2020 and 2023…

24 Jun 2019

Dalian iron ore rises, supply crunch concerns persist

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China's iron ore futures extended gains on Friday after touching a record high in the previous session, as concerns persisted over tight supply amid declining shipment from Rio Tinto and expectations of strong demand.Mining giant Rio Tinto on Wednesday night lowered its guidance on volumes of iron ore it expects to ship from the key Pilbara producing region in Australia for the third time since April.It now puts the upper limit as much as 5.7% under its original forecast, giving…

21 Jun 2019

Iron Ore Spikes on Shipment Concerns

© Kara/AdobeStock

China's iron ore futures extended gains on Friday after touching a record high in the previous session, as concerns persisted over tight supply amid declining shipment from Rio Tinto and expectations of strong demand.Mining giant Rio Tinto on Wednesday lowered its guidance on volumes of iron ore it expects to ship from the key Pilbara producing region in Australia for the third time since April.It now puts the upper limit as much as 5.7% under its original forecast, giving a window…

11 Jun 2019

Finland Opens Largest Nordic LNG Terminal After Delay

Photo: Wartsila

Finland's 110 million-euro ($124.5 million) Manga liquefied natural gas import terminal has fully opened after a year-long delay to the project, engineering firm Wartsila and part-owner Gasum said on Tuesday.Manga, the largest LNG terminal in the Nordic region with storage capacity of 50,000 cubic metres, began receiving some shipments in November 2017, but is only now ready for full commercial operations after an additional year of tests.A Wartsila executive told Reuters the testing period had been prolonged due to some adjustments that the facility needed…

22 May 2019

Dry Bulk Fleet Utilization Falls 3.7% in Q1

Pic: Golden Ocean

Global dry bulk fleet utilization (calculated as total demand in tonne miles transported divided by total available fleet capacity) dropped by 3.7% in the first quarter of 2019, reflecting the trend observed in the rate environment, said Golden Ocean Group (GOGL),  Bermuda registered, Norway based dry bulk shipping company.According to Maritime Analytics, global fleet utilization was 82.1% in the first quarter of 2019, down from 85.8% in the fourth quarter of 2018 and 85.1% in the first quarter of 2018.According to the same source…

23 Jan 2019

LNG Import: China is World's No. 2 buyer in 2018

© Wojciech Wrzesien/AdobeStock

China's imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in December soared 25 percent from the same period a year earlier to a monthly record of 6.29 million tonnes, customs data showed on Wednesday.The previous record of 5.99 million tonnes was set in November.For the whole of 2018, imports grew 41 percent from 2017 to a record 53.78 million tonnes, according to the data from the General Administration of Customs. That saw China retain its position as the world's second-buyer buyer of the super-chilled fuel after Japan…

28 Jun 2018

China June Seaborne Iron Ore could Set Record

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Lucasz Z)

June seaborne iron ore imports to reach 98.22 mln Tons; local mills to ramp up output to reap large margins. China's June seaborne iron ore imports are on track to rise to a record high, data on Thomson Reuters Eikon showed, stoking concerns of oversupply as hundreds millions of iron ore are being stockpiled at Chinese ports. Iron ore arrivals for June are set to be 98.22 million tonnes according to vessel-tracking and port data compiled by Thomson Reuters Supply Chain and Commodity Forecasts. That would be the highest ever for the Supply Chain data going back to February 2016.

04 Jun 2018

Oil Tanker Scrapping to Hit Multi-year High

© Evren Kalinbacak / Adobe Stock

The shipping industry will this year scrap the largest number of oil tankers in over half-a-decade, driven by weak earnings, firm prices for scrap steel and the need to prepare fleets for strict new environmental regulations.The surge in scrapping underscores how the sector is grappling with one of its worst-ever crises, hit hard after rates for transporting oil plunged to multi-year lows in the wake of excess tanker supply and tepid demand as OPEC production cuts bite."The tanker markets are definitely in a trough at the moment…

01 Jun 2018

Dry Bulk Shipping: No Room for Newbuilds

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

DemandThe improved fundamentals during 2017 are clearly seen in the freight rate levels during the first four months of 2018. Freight rates for Handysize, Supramax and Panamax went up by 25-27 percent as compared to the same period of last year. All three sectors moved from loss-making average earnings in the full year of 2017 to a profitable level in first four months of 2018.Meanwhile, capesize freight rates improved by only 5 percent as compared to the same period last year…

22 May 2018

China and Shifting Seaborne Iron Ore Dynamics

Photo: © icarmen13/Adobe Stock

The seaborne iron ore market appears to be in something of a sweet spot currently, with largely steady demand and prices that have been flatlining for the past couple of months. Of course, another way of saying that a market is enjoying relatively stable and good times is that it's boring, but in iron ore there is plenty of action bubbling beneath the seemingly calm exterior. It's not so much that iron ore prices or volumes are expected to shift dramatically in the coming months, it's more that structural changes in the world's biggest importer, China, are re-shaping how the industry works.

19 May 2018

China to Cut Steel Capacity by 2025

© zjk/Adobe Stock

China will shut down more outdated steel plants and bring total capacity to less than 1 billion tonnes by 2025, the president of the country's steel industry association said, adding that national demand for the metal is set to decline gradually. With more than three quarters of firms suffering losses as a result of a price-sapping capacity surplus, China vowed in early 2016 to shut 150-150 million tonnes of annual production in five years in a bid to raise profitability and utilisation rates in the sector. Its capacity then was estimated at 1.2 billion tonnes.

01 Feb 2018

Baltic Index Stretches Losing Streak

© Dmitriy Tolmachov / Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index extended its slide to a fourth straight session to touch a near six-month low on Thursday, as rates fell for all vessel segments amid a seasonal slowdown in demand. The overall index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, dropped by 38 points, or 3.3 percent, to 1,114 points, the lowest since Aug. 10, 2017. The index recorded a 15.66 percent decline in January, its biggest monthly percentage fall since May 2017.

19 Mar 2018

Duluth-Superior Shipping Season To Open Today

Photo provided by Duluth Seaway Port Authority

The anticipated departure of six vessels this week signals a strong start to the 2018 commercial shipping season for the Port of Duluth-Superior and the entire region. All will be leaving their winter berths to load iron ore for delivery to steel mills on the Lower Great Lakes—this nation’s industrial heartland. U.S. Coast Guard cutter Alder made several passes through the ice in the shipping channels last week, and, starting today, Heritage Marine tugs will be assisting with breakout operations in the harbor.

16 Apr 2018

China's Thermal Coal Futures Rally on Tight Import Policy

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

China's most-active thermal coal futures jumped 2.9 percent on Monday, marking the biggest gain since August 2017, as concerns of tightening the import policy dampened outlook for foreign coal supplies ahead of summer.Coal futures prices ended at 570 yuan per tonne after touching a two-week high of 578.8 yuan per tonne earlier in the session.Futures rallied as traders took cues from a wider ban on coal imports after some ports in Fujian province put a temporary halt on them."Our company received instructions that Chuanshan anchorage under Ningbo port has banned docking by any vessel, which car

08 May 2018

Great Lakes/Seaway Iron Ore Trade Behind 2017

© Paul Lemke / Adobe Stock

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway totaled 5.5 million tons in April, a decrease of 6.3 percent compared to a year ago but nearly 15 percent ahead of the month’s five-year average, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported.Shipments from U.S. Great Lakes ports in April were down 4.5 percent at 5.1 million tons, LCA said. The mine that shipped through Escanaba, Mich. has been permanently idled, meaning all the iron ore shipped to U.S. steel mills in April had to transit the Poe Lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

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