Tokyo Steel cuts product prices for October, first cut in 11 months

15 September 2015

Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co , Japan's top electric arc furnace steelmaker, said on Tuesday it will cut the price of products for delivery in October by 5,000 yen to 13,000 yen ($42-$108) a tonne due to a rise in cheap imports and slack domestic demand.

The move marks its first price reduction in 11 months.

The company's pricing strategy is closely watched by Asian rivals such as Posco, Hyundai Steel Co and Baosteel, which export to Japan.

Prices for Tokyo Steel's main product, H-shaped beams, which are used in construction, will fall by 7,000 yen, or 9 percent, to 70,000 yen ($582) per tonne in October.

"The price cut is to reflect the current spot market in Japan which has been pressured by slow demand in construction due to delayed projects and high inventories of steel sheets," Tokyo Steel's Managing Director Kiyoshi Imamura told reporters.

"In addition, steelmakers overseas including in China, South Korea and Taiwan are stepping up their efforts to sell products at a discount to Japanese users. That weighs on the prices here," he added.

Imamura said he expected construction demand to improve later this year, and hoped to signal to buyers through a single large price cut that steel prices were bottoming out.