Post-Lunar New Year saw a reversal of the doom and gloom experienced by most of the global steel market as China’s restocking took on epic proportions, propelled in large part by buoyant futures market sentiment. Prices rose, raw materials followed, the good times were back… or so it seemed (though no one really believed it). A glance at the May data for this year and last shows remarkable similarities in domestic and export steel prices, production and export levels. Back to the future. Sentiment, on the other hand, is way gloomier now than it was this time last year. Perhaps this is due to the realization that, given the slowing economy, the stronger market was always going to be short-lived; a pleasant illusion while it lasted - much like China’s capacity reduction plans.
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