Commodity market report

Global steel short-term outlook February 2017

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Report summary

Over the coming months, much of the outlook for steel prices will depend on government policies rather than traditional supply-demand fundamentals. In China, steel prices will depend on the balancing act between further capacity reductions and government support for the steel-consuming sectors – for example, a possible continuation of tax cuts for the manufacturing sector. In the US, prices will be heavily affected by the expected NAFTA renegotiations and other possible import restrictions. Meanwhile in Europe, there is a possibility that the ruling on duties of HR coil imports from Russia and anti-dumping duties on rebar from Belarus, combined with stronger-than-expected steel demand, could provide some foothold for prices through H1. On balance we believe that easing raw material costs will gradually bring steel prices down. However, there is an underlying upside risk to our forecasts.

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    Global steel markets short-term outlook data February 2017.xls

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Table of contents

Tables and charts

This report includes 38 images and tables including:


  • Key companies: Image 1
  • Costs: Image 1
  • Costs: Image 2
  • Global steel production opened the year strongly
  • Market structure: Image 2
  • Emerging markets' apparent steel consumption
  • Mature markets' apparent steel consumption
  • Crude steel production...
  • Steel stocks soar
  • Eurozone construction PMI: still too early…
  • EU apparent demand and crude steel production
  • Market structure: Image 9
  • Market structure: Image 10
  • India's crude steel production…
  • India steel demand
  • Market structure: Image 13
  • Market structure: Image 14
  • Brazil steel demand indicators
  • Brazil steel market structure
  • Rebar producers reactive on price
  • But spot prices don't follow
  • Russia crude steel production…
  • Russia demand indicators
  • Rebar price increased significantly in February
  • China's manufacturing industry faces downside risk in the short term
  • Supply-demand balances: Image 3
  • Supply-demand balances: Image 4
  • We continue to expect that the recovery in non-residential construction will be a key demand driver this year
  • Low stock levels at service centres are creating a benign environment for mills to push through early year price rises on flat products
  • EU and USA prices have continued to rise in February. Stock cycle reversal in the US and long lead times in Europe will support them for another quarter. But arbitrage will kick in eventually.
  • Rebar fell slightly in Europe, but continued to soar in China, disregarding fundamentals. Speculation in the futures market is ripe for a turn and will mark the beginning of a downward readjustment for all Chinese grades.


  • Prices and other key data
  • EBITDA margin for selected steel makers (table and chart)
  • Costs: Table 1
  • Market structure: Table 1
  • Supply-demand balances: Table 1
  • Supply-demand balances: Table 2
  • Key companies: Table 2

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