Japanese 3 major stainless steel makers gained consolidated recurring profit for nine months of April-December 2010 while other 2 makers, Nippon Steel & Sumikin Stainless Steel Corporation (NSSC) and Nippon Yakin Kogyo, posted recurring loss. Nippon Metal Industry’s profit was very slight. For profit improvement, stainless steel makers should reflect high material cost such for nickel on their sales prices early.Nippon Yakin Kogyo posted consolidated recurring loss at 275 million yen for April-December 2010, improved from 5.531 billion yen loss in the same period of fiscal 2009. Net loss was 1.779 billion yen. Three-month recurring loss was 51 million yen for October-December 2010. For October-December, NSSC, Nisshin Steel and Nippon Kinzoku gained recurring profit, 60 million yen at NSSC, 1.5 billion yen at Nisshin Steel and 495 million yen at Nippon Kinzoku. Their non-consolidated steel shipment volume decreased for October-December due to demand slowdown in domestic and overseas markets. Strong yen trend also impacted the sales. NSSC’s shipment decreased by 2.3% to 212,000 tonnes for October-December from July-September. Nisshin Steel’s shipment decreased by 8.3% to 110,000 tonnes. Nippon Yakin Kogyo’s shipment decreased by 8.2% to 56,000 tonnes for common grade products. Meanwhile, Nippon Metal Industry’s shipment increased by 10.3% to 64,000 tonnes. Sales volume is expected to increase for January-March including speculative demand. Domestic demand would recover mainly for building materials while the shipment is active for mobile devices such as smartphones. Japanese stainless steel makers aim to improve domestic profitability as well as keeping export volume.
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