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According to the factory policy for June bookings issued by Baosteel on Thursday, hot rolled steel plate is down 180 yuan ($29) per ton, while the price of cold rolled steel plate is down 150 yuan per ton, and the prices of most mid-thick products have been decreased by 200 yuan per ton. The price of mid-thick boat deck, however, stays the same.
"The drop in steel prices shows the lower confidence of Baosteel with the coming of the off-peak market, and the company probably has received an decrease on the amount of orders recently," said Zhu Xi'an, an analyst at Mysteel.com.
Steel prices across the country have kept dropping after Spring Festival with the average price of hot rolled steel plate leading the fall with a drop of 600 yuan per ton. The average prices of mid-thick plate and cold rolled steel plate were was 300 to 400 yuan cheaper per ton.
"The whole situation won't get better in the next quarter as June, July and August are the off-peak season for the steel products market," said Qiu Yuecheng, an analyst with steel trading platform Xiben New Line.
Qiu added that the other leading steel manufacturers including Anshan Iron and Steel Group, Wuhan Iron and Steel Group, and Shougang Group will follow Baosteel's lead and also reduce prices in June.