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Steelmaker Severstal's output stable in Q3 despite weak demand outside Russia

London — Russian mining and steel company Severstal said Friday its production in the third quarter and the first nine months of the year was stable, supported by a high proportion of domestic sales which offset weak overseas demand.

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July-September crude steel output was down 1% quarter on quarter at 3 million mt, despite the divestment in May of the electric arc furnace-based Balakovo mill.

Q3 steel sales were stable quarter on quarter at 2.8 million mt, with domestic sales taking a share of 67% (Q2: 70%) due to suppressed demand in foreign markets and unfavorable conditions for exports.

Also, in Q3, Severstal sold to third parties some 66,000 mt of washed coking coal, almost 40% less than in Q2. Its external iron ore pellet sales dropped 7% on quarter to 1.38 million mt. Iron ore concentrate sales, at 63,000mt, were down 68%.

Over January-September, the Russian company produced 9.1 million mt of crude steel, little changed year on year. Steel sales rose 1% to 8.5 million mt. High value added steel product ?- those with post-hot rolling processing -? represented 45% of the total sold in both Q3 and the first nine months.

Severstal's nine-month sales of rolled steel products grew 6% year on year to 6.9 million mt. Hot-rolled coil comprised almost half of that at 3.31 million mt. Sales of zinc and polymer coated coils accounted for 16% (1.1 million mt), with rebar sales at 1.1 million mt. Cold-rolled coil and plate each represented 10% of sales.

Severstal's washed coking coal sales to third parties went up 74% to 331,000 mt from January-September. Sales of iron ore pellets declined 11% to 4.17 million mt and iron ore concentrate sales gained 8% to 615,000mt.

Over January-September, the company sold to third parties 10% of its washed coal, half of its pellets and 14% of iron ore concentrate. Most of the unsold volume of raw materials was consumed in-house to make pig iron.

-- Ekaterina Bouckley, katya.bouckley@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Dan Lalor, daniel.lalor@spglobal.com