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Tokyo Steel to freeze product prices in August after hike in July

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·1-min read
FILE PHOTO: A man works on a top of a structure at a construction site in Tokyo
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TOKYO (Reuters) - Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co <5423.T>, Japan's top electric-arc furnace steelmaker, said on Tuesday will freeze product prices in August to make sure that a hike implemented this month will be absorbed by the market.

The company raised its steel product prices by 3.5%-7.3% in July to reflect an upward trend in international markets on strong demand from top buyer China.

Overseas markets have stayed solid on the back of demand from China, while the Japanese market is slowly recovering, with orders for construction materials picking up, it said in a statement.

But local inventories of steel sheets remain high because of a slow rebound in manufacturing activity, it added.

Tokyo Steel's pricing is closely watched by Asian rivals such as South Korea's Posco <005490.KS> and Hyundai Steel <004020.KS>, and China's Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd (Baosteel) <600019.SS>.

(Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Kim Coghill)