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German steel trade inventories fell to their lowest level in several years in November as demand picks up, according to data released Dec. 18 by the Federation of German Steel Traders (BDS).

German steel trade inventories fall to multi-year low as demand picks up
German steel trade inventories fall to multi-year low as demand picks up

Sales of steel products improve

Overall sales of steel products have also improved in recent months.

Steel trade inventories well below average

Distributors’ inventories, including longs, flats and other products, totaled 1.98 million mt in November, down from 2.12 million mt in October and 2.13 million mt a year earlier. The total was well below the 2019 average of 2.33 million mt and the average of the past six years of 2.37 million mt, the data showed.

Sales higher than in the same period last year

Sales of steel products by German traders totaled 974,888 mt in November, slightly lower than the previous month. But significantly higher than the 883,305 mt sold in November 2019. And than the 2019 average monthly sales of 892,841 mt, according to BDS data. It was also higher than the monthly sales average of 909,079 mt for the past six years.

Increased steel production in Germany

The trend toward higher sales coincides with the recent increase in steel production in Germany. As the market continues to recover from a slump triggered by the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year.

German crude steel production rose to 3.38 million tons in November, up 15% from the same month a year earlier, according to the German Steel Federation.

Crude steel production fell slightly from 3.42 million tons in October, which had one more day than November, according to data from the Düsseldorf-based steelmakers’ association.

Source: Bundesverband Deutscher Stahlhandel

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