Steel reinforcement-bar futures in Shanghai rose, extending a third weekly gain, on optimism that a strengthening economy may support demand from the world’s biggest consumer of the material used in housing and railroads.
Rebar for May delivery, the most-active contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange, rose as much as 0.7 percent to 3,726 yuan ($614) a metric ton, and traded at 3,720 yuan at 9:54 a.m. local time. Futures climbed 0.9 percent last week.
China’s trade surplus widened last month to the largest in more than four years, in a sign global demand is helping sustain a recovery in the world’s second-biggest economy. Crude steel consumption next year may grow 3.2 percent to 715 million tons, while iron ore prices will remain high, Xinhua News Agency reported Dec. 6 citing Li Xinchuang, head of the China Metallurgical Industry Planning and Research Institute.
“The improving economic outlook is supporting Shanghai rebar at the moment,” said Long Qingqing, a Shanghai-based metal analyst at Huatai Great Wall Futures Co.
Iron ore for May delivery on the Dalian Commodity Exchange were little changed at 942 yuan a ton. The raw material for immediate delivery at Tianjin port tracked by The Steel Index fell 0.2 percent to $139.20 on Dec. 6.
Rebar for immediate delivery tracked by Beijing Antaike Information Development Co. was little changed at 3,552 yuan a ton on Dec. 6.
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