Shanghai iron ore, steel futures recover from losses in early trade

Shanghai, China Aerial View (Adobe Stock)

Steel futures in China closed higher on Thursday after falling more than 3% in early trade on demand concerns due to the fast-spreading coronavirus pandemic.

Hot-rolled coil futures on the Shanghai Futures Exchange ended up 0.4% at 3,220 yuan ($453.63) per tonne, erasing early losses but still marked their lowest closing price since Nov. 12.

The most active construction rebar contract for May delivery edged up 0.2% at 3,377 yuan a tonne at close.

Benchmark iron ore futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange also recovered after a 3% drop earlier, ending up 0.9% at 647 yuan a tonne

Benchmark iron ore futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange also recovered after a 3% drop earlier, ending up 0.9% at 647 yuan a tonne.

“We have started to see ships departing from major ore terminals down 4-7% since two weeks ago,” Singapore-based steel and iron ore data analytics company Tivlon Technologies wrote in a note.

“It is likely to see the numbers going down further as stricter social distancing measures kick in worldwide,” the note said.

Shanghai steel futures had fallen followed by a dive in raw material prices. Tang Binghua, an analyst with Founder CIFCO Futures, said the drop during early trade was due to sluggish demand and market adjustments especially given some gains in the previous weeks.

(By Min Zhang and Tom Daly; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)

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