Increasing Stainless Sheet Price in Tokyo

Market price of stainless flat steel is increasing at 300,000-310,000 yen per tonne for SUS304 grade and at 200,000-210,000 yen for SUS430 in Tokyo. The price is likely to keep increasing.Japanese stainless flat steel and coil inventory held by coil centers decreased by 1,057 tonnes to 109,893 tonnes at the end of February from January, according to the association. The stock decreased slightly to 67,951 tonnes for nickel series stainless and to 41,809 tonnes for chrome series stainless. The stock for shipment was 1.85 month for the total stock and the stock rate was 1.83 months for nickel series products and 1.88 months for chrome series products. The distributors’ inventory decreased as expected after domestic makers reduced the output since mid-2005. The market mood shifted from downward to increase under higher nickel price at London Metal Exchange and recovery of market price in offshore market. The demand is firm for electric water heater and portable music player in the domestic distributors’ market. The demand for chrome series products also keeps high-level for automobile.