316/316L stainless steel price rises further
316/316L stainless steel price rises further

February 27, 2023 - Prices for molybdenum-containing stainless steels 316 and 316L continued to rise on Monday. Reports of a strong U.S. labor market have had an impact on the EUR/USD currency pair. And supply difficulties from the auto industry and semiconductor manufacturers appear to be increasingly under control, which should ensure further growth in overall steel demand.

Prices of 316/316L stainless steel grades continued to rise in the Chinese spot market on Monday, despite some manageable declines in some commodities, mainly due to profit-taking and changes in the EUR/USD currency pair. On average, prices rose by more than 2%. The main reason for this remains molybdenum prices, which remain at record levels - more background can be found here: "Molybdenum prices hit record highs, supply tight".

The bottleneck in semiconductor supply in 2021 and 2022, which once led to a large backlog of orders for automakers, seems to be gradually easing. According to reports, the delivery time of new cars has shortened significantly, especially in Germany, the car-manufacturing country. As we expected, this should also lead to a surge in demand for steel, aluminum and stainless steel from the auto industry, which still has some work to do.

Meanwhile, the semiconductor index SOX is up 45% since October 2022. For 2023, in addition to demand from the automotive sector, India and the EU are expected to see increased investment in 5-G infrastructure, as well as growth in dynamic data center sales. Deutsche Bank predicts that semiconductor sales will grow by about $10 billion over the next 12 months.

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