In the third quarter of 2019, gray cement ex-works prices continued to display mixed trends worldwide, according to the 3Q2019 update of CW Research’s Global Cement Trade Price Report.
Trade prices for gray cement continued to decline over the same quarter the previous year.
“Gray cement trading was marked by a decrease in volumes and prices at the global level due to rising trade restrictions and a generalized slowdown in global economic growth. As for ex-works prices, the main story remains the steep upward correction in Middle East rates as price rationalization and parity take place in Saudi Arabia”, observes Prashant Singh, CW Group’s Associate Director.
Housing boosts US prices
India’s cement ex-works prices have stabilized at over USD 68 per ton. Companies have been striving to regain pricing power, but their efforts have only partly succeeded as both floods and droughts have put a cap on demand, and GDP growth has slowed from previously robust rates.
Ex-works prices for cement in the US increased over 6 percent, with the housing segment maintaining the growth trend initiated in the post-2008 crisis.
In the UAE, prices improved marginally quarter-on-quarter as works continue on the projects associated with Expo 2020.
Turkey continues to lead gray cement exports
In the third quarter of 2019, average trade prices for gray cement continued to decline, remaining above USD 62 per ton for the set of 46 countries with estimated data for the period.
From CW Research’s set of countries with data for the third quarter of 2019, Turkey carries on its leadership of world gray cement exports, accounting for 15 percent of the total trade.
With the exception of Sub-Saharan Africa, there was a generalized decrease in gray cement FOB prices across regions on a quarterly basis.
Clinker prices slide
Compared to 3Q2018, white cement export volumes are estimated to have dropped to 1.2 million tons for the set of 21 reporting countries with complete data for the third quarter of 2019. In terms of pricing, average export prices for the premium commodity rose quarter-on-quarter.
Clinker volumes traded worldwide fell in 3Q2019 over the equivalent year-ago period. For a set of 25 countries, average FOB prices of the commodity slipped over 8 percent. Despite shipping fewer clinker volumes compared to the second quarter of 2019, Asia-Pacific-Japan continued to top exports on a global basis.
World slag export volumes recorded a double-digit expansion when compared to 3Q2018. Meanwhile, trade prices edged down compared to the second quarter of 2019. During 3Q2019, Japan maintained its leadership in global slag exports.
The Global Cement Trade Price Report (GCTPR) is CW Research’s benchmark price assessment for monthly gray cement, white cement, clinker and granulated blast furnace slag prices and volumes. The 150+ page report, published on a quarterly basis, serves as the industry go-to source for monthly price data for over 70 individual markets worldwide, including multiple cornerstone data series: import, export, ex-works and market prices. Find out more about the report here