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Kallanish Kallanish

Knowledge matters Knowledge matters

December, 11th 2019

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NOV 18
10:03

Japan steel orders shrink further

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Japanese steel mills have reported another decline in orders in September. Export orders showed a rare year-on-year increase, but all domestic sectors were weaker, Kallanish notes.

Total orders in September were down -1% month-on-month and -2.8% y-o-y at 5.026 million tonnes, according to data released by the Japan Iron and Steel Federation (Jisf). That leaves orders since the start of the financial year in April 2019 at 32.199mt, down -3.8% y-o-y.

Weaker domestic orders have led to a boost in exports. In September export orders were down -2.7% m-o-m but up 3.7% y-o-y at 1.67mt. Over the financial year export orders are now up 0.4% to 11.319mt. Total Japanese exports in September were up 13.5% y-o-y at 3.072mt, according to customs data.

Orders from the construction sector saw a seasonal uptick in September but remained down on-year. Orders were up 9.9% m-o-m but down -6.4% to 876,000t on-year, driven by both housing and commercial construction, while civil engineering demand was steady. Over April-September construction orders were down -10.5% y-o-y at 5.15mt.

Manufacturing orders meanwhile slumped -9.5% m-o-m and -7.6% y-o-y to 1.397mt. Over April-September manufacturing orders were down -2.8% y-o-y at 9.095mt. The weakness was seen across most manufacturing sectors. The core automotive sector saw orders in September fall -13.7% m-o-m and -6.6% y-o-y to 653,000t, while orders for April-September were down -4.1% to 4.252mt.