Tokyo Steel to maintain product prices steady in March

TOKYO, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co Ltd will leave product prices unchanged in March to ensure a hike implemented in January would be absorbed by the market, Japan’s top electric-arc furnace steelmaker said on Monday.

For March, prices of its main H-shaped beams will stay steady at 93,000 yen ($880) a tonne while hot rolled coils will remain unchanged at 79,000 yen ($748) a tonne.

Steel markets abroad have rebounded after China’s Lunar New Year holiday with solid demand in many countries, but orders of construction materials in the Japanesec market slowed following a plunge in steel scrap prices, Tokyo Steel said in a statement.

“But we expect strong demand from manufacturers will continue through the end of March and the recent recovery in scrap prices will boost activity in the market,” it added.

Tokyo Steel’s pricing is closely watched by Asian rivals such as South Korea’s Posco and Hyundai Steel , and China’s Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd (Baosteel) . ($1 = 105.6400 yen) (Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)