Concrete reinforcing steel bar price rebounded by 1.7% which equaled to 1,000 yen per tonne for the first time in 6 months when rebar makers and dealers raised their selling prices in May due to surging fuel price. The market price increased to around 59,000 yen per tonne for base sized products with 19 millimeters diameter delivered directly from makers to job sites. Rebar makers around Tokyo are likely to raise the price more with firm demand in the region.The market price stayed at around 58,000 yen per tonne in Tokyo till April after the price decreased by 1,000 yen per tonne in December 2005. Rebar makers regulated their rebar output to the level balanced with immediate demand volume under low demand season in January-March. In April rebar production cost increased by average 1,500-2,000 yen per tonne at makers due to soaring fuel price and the makers raised their selling prices in turn for May contracts.Firm demand also supported the market price. Rebar production around Tokyo increased by 9% to 340,000 tonnes including export in April from March. Rebar makers for both base and small sized products hold order backlogs for more than 3 months. The makers would need additional price hike to cover higher fuel price and keep enough profitability. The market price is expected to maintain strong for a while when the makers advance price hike.
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