SHANGHAI, Dec 21 (SMM) – China's rebar inventories shrank this week as stricter enforcement of winter cuts lowered steel supplies. This came after a week-on-week buildup of 3.5%, or 168,900 mt, in overall rebar stocks last Thursday.
Overall inventories, including social and in-plant stocks, shrank to 4.86 million mt as of Thursday December 21, down 1.4% on the week and 5.7% on the year, showed SMM data. Short-term demand from construction sites and large pipeline stocks also accounted for lower inventories at warehouses.
In-plant stocks fell, while social inventories extended increases on a weekly basis, SMM data showed.
Inventories across steel mills stood at 1.86 million mt as of December 21, down 5.4% from a week ago and 5.1% from a year ago. Social stocks rose 1.2% on the week but dipped 6% on the year to stand at 3.01 million mt as of Thursday December 20.
As of December 19, there were some 700,000 mt of backlogged rebar cargoes at Bayuquan port in China’s northern province of Liaoning, and around 785,500 mt at three major ports in the north-east.
In the short run, overall inventories of rebar are likely to pick up as deliveries from the north arrive in southern markets and as demand from construction sites wanes in winter.