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Company Directory
MEPS (International)
263 Glossop Road
Sheffield
S10 2GZ
[t] +44 (0) 114 2750570
[f] +44 (0) 114 2759808


MEPS (International) LTD is a leading consultancy company operating in the steel sector worldwide. The organisation was formed in 1979. Over the years we have undertaken a wide range of studies covering all aspects of the global steel scene. Our independence is the cornerstone of the business. The steel industry is the nucleus of our business. From the core activity we provide a range of services and advice to clients through our multi-disciplinary team of consultants. The areas in which our organisation has built up considerable expertise are highlighted below: Steel Market Prices Steel Market Trends Steel Market Distribution Steel Manufacturing Costs Technological Trends in Manufacture Raw Materials Steel Trade Steel Products Steel Consuming Industries


Fresh impetus for compliance with anti-pollution measures in China
17 April, 2015
According to MEPS, the Chinese authorities are, at last, exerting pressure on the steel and other polluting sectors to comply with regulations to improve air and water quality. For too long, they say, they have turned a blind eye to malpractices.
Chinese steel losing some of its competitive edge?
11 November, 2014
UK steel industry analyst MEPS is reporting that, in October 2014, a profound change developed in the relationship between Chinese export steel prices and domestic selling values in the rest of the world.
Autumn recovery for EU steel prices predicted
16 June, 2014
The MEPS – All Products Composite EU Carbon Steel Price has fallen to a 51 month low in June 2014. Further small reductions are possible in the coming months. However, an upturn in steel selling values is highlighted in the June issue of the company’s monthly report, European Steel Review and the On-Line Steel Price Forecasting Service.
World steel prices predicted to rise over the next three years
10 January, 2014
2013 is expected to be the low point in the latest steel price cycle, according to MEPS. A steady economic recovery is anticipated over the next five years. Steel demand growth is predicted as economic activity expands.
Modest nickel price increases anticipated for the near term
08 December, 2013
Nickel prices are forecast to rise in the short term despite LME stocks being at record levels, having recently broken through the 250,000 tonne mark for the first time.
Surge of Chinese steel exports to USA predicted in Q4
17 November, 2013
Steel producers in the United States need to brace themselves for a significant increase in the supply of steel from China in the final quarter of this year. The price differential between domestic prices in the United States and the estimated landed price for exports from China (usually a strong correlation to the volume of imports) has grown steadily during the second half of 2013.
Steel prices set to rise annually to 2016
17 October, 2013
MEPS forecasts a recovery in its global steel price over the next three years. In the company's latest long term forecast, it predicts that 2013 will be the low point in this cycle. Consumption should begin to pick up in 2014 as the economic climate improves. Nevertheless, there are a number of difficulties to overcome.
Currency fluctuations dampen ferrous scrap buying sentiment in emerging markets
04 October, 2013
India, Japan, Russia/CIS, the US and South Africa form the cornerstone of this summary MEPS review of scrap buying markets.
Bumpy ride ahead for European steel sector?
15 August, 2013
The European steel sector has endured a very tough time over the past year, mirroring the situation in the wider economy. Steel prices were approximately 10% lower in the first seven months of 2013, compared with the corresponding period in 2012. Mill margins have been continuously squeezed. MEPS’ assessment for the price of iron ore fines (Fe 64%, FOB - Brazil) has declined by only 2% in the same period.
Weak demand growth unsettles price sentiment in emerging steel markets
30 July, 2013
Challenging business conditions persist in the Russian Federation. Domestic steelmakers have begun to lobby the government for stricter anti-dumping measures to combat the threat from rising import tonnage. Stockists remain cautious over the strength of underlying consumption in August, citing the subdued construction season. The recovery in shipments to tube fabricators, OEMs and mechanical engineering companies has also been weaker than expected.
Steadily rising annual steel prices likely in EU over next three years
22 July, 2013
In a new report from MEPS entitled EU Steel Price Forecasts to 2017 the authors contend that annual average steel prices in the region will improve next year and for the following two years.
Stainless mills consider changes to alloy surcharge format
03 June, 2013
LME nickel stocks, in late May, stood at an all-time high of almost 180,000 tonnes. This is 26% above the total of 142,000 tonnes at the beginning of this year. Furthermore, it is double the figure recorded at the beginning of 2012.
North European steel prices under downward pressure again
28 May, 2013
European flat products prices have come under downward pressure during the past month. Selling values in central and southern parts of the region have recorded significant reductions. However, as is often the case, there is a time lag between movement in transaction figures in the Nordic region and those in the rest of Europe. Some supply chain participants in Sweden and Norway have reported no change, as yet. However, the weakening of their currencies means that, in effect, selling values have slipped in Euro terms
China should link new steelmaking capacity additions with plant closures
14 May, 2013
The Chinese steel sector has entered a period of slower growth. Annual double digit percentage increases in steelmaking will not be repeated in the future. Last year’s rate of expansion was 3.2 percent. MEPS reports that an average figure of 5 percent is likely, at best, during the rest of this decade.
Index steel pricing in the US will continue in another form
06 May, 2013
The practice of steel purchasing from major steel mills in the US, using discounts from CRU’s published steel price index has been abandoned. This, however, is not likely to halt the use of consultants’ pricing information in the future. The methodology for making the agreements in the past was fatally flawed, according to MEPS.
Will new rules to make Chinese steel industry greener work?
15 March, 2013
Special emissions restrictions are to be put in place by the Chinese environment agency in April, this year. These will affect the steel and several other polluting industries.
Stainless steel sector rationalisation *inevitable*
02 March, 2013
The merger between Outokumpu and Inoxum - the stainless steel producing arm of ThyssenKrupp - together with the associated divestments and planned plant closures, highlights the role that industry consolidation may have to play in the rebalancing of supply and demand in stainless steel, says MEPS.
MEPS: 2012 net growth in Chinese steel trade was worth $5 billion
13 February, 2013
Total Chinese exports of finished rolled steel products, in 2012, are expected to be 6.6 million tonnes above the outturn in the previous year at 39.25 million tonnes. Imports are predicted to have declined by 1.8 million tonnes to 12.5 million tonnes. The positive balance of trade would, therefore rise from 18.3 in 2011 to 27.5 million tonnes last year. This represents an increase of 46% (worth approximately $US5 billion).
Slow recovery forecast for North American steel output
18 January, 2013
The economy of the United States and Canada recovered slightly in 2012. This translated into stronger demand for steel, despite volatile pricing over the year. The main growth market was the automotive sector. In contrast, consumption slipped in Mexico. Because there are a number of economic difficulties to overcome, MEPS predicts only modest improvement in apparent steel consumption across the region in the years ahead and does not expect steel usage in 2016 to attain the pre-crisis level recorded in 2007.
Chinese export offers keep international steel prices in check
11 January, 2013
Competitively priced Chinese export offers have played a part in controlling price increases in many parts of the world according to MEPS International Ltd, the UK based company of steel analysts. Quotations by suppliers of Chinese material have been used in negotiations between western buyers and sellers to keep price increases to a minimum.
MEPS: Mild recovery in stainless prices forecast for 2013
03 January, 2013
It's that time of the year when participants in the stainless steel supply chain try to predict how the market will perform in the coming twelve months. Producers and distributors have been hoping, since the global economic crash began in 2008, that an upturn is on the horizon. However, the prevailing consensus, at least in the West, is that 2013 will not be very different from this year.
Northern European steel prices show no sign of upturn
26 November, 2012
Steel market activity in northern Europe is still very weak and there is no sign of an upturn in demand in the near term. Ex-mill selling values dropped again in November. Stockists and end-users remain reluctant to carry any more inventory than is absolutely necessary. However, prices are believed to be close to the bottom of the current cycle. Indeed, several mills have proposed increased basis figures.
China rules the roost in iron and steelmaking
05 November, 2012
It is clear that to understand the activities of the global steel industry one must study, in depth, the complexities of the Chinese steel market. This year, the Chinese steel mills will contribute 46 percent of the world’s output. This figure could be higher if account is taken of under-reporting of production.
Another record high for global steel output predicted, while EU steelmaking declines further
31 October, 2012
Despite the economic slowdown, MEPS expects world steel production to reach 1550 million tonnes this year - a 1.9% increase on the 2011 outturn. Further gains are anticipated next year. Steelmaking in the European Union is [redicted to decline by 4.5% in 2012. Regional producers continue to restrict supply in response to weak demand caused by the fragile economic situation.
Weak demand depresses Northern European steel prices
25 October, 2012
Steel market activity in northern Europe remains very weak and ex-mill selling values slipped significantly for October. Buyers are cautious, anticipating the possibility of further price reductions and reluctant to carry any more inventory than is absolutely necessary.
Difficult steel market conditions in China reverberate worldwide
06 October, 2012
The importance of China to the global steel sector and its suppliers has been reinforced in the past few months. Never has there been a time when the old adages "Ignore China at your peril’ and "When China sneezes the whole world catches a cold’ seemed as pertinent as in the last few weeks....
Rising nickel prices give a lift to global stainless steel selling values
02 October, 2012
The usual, seasonal upturn in demand for stainless steel has failed to occur, so far. In most years, distributors and end-users allow their inventories to run low during the summer holiday period, then rebuild stocks in early autumn before what they hope will be a busy few months before the year-end. On this occasion though, there has been little or no pickup in activity.
Lower raw material prices expected to delay steel price upturn
04 September, 2012
No significant increases in steel selling values for flat products are likely during the remainder of 2012, according to MEPS. Iron ore spot prices have started to decline as demand for the principal steel making raw material falters.
US flat steel price increases leads to short delivery times
13 August, 2012
In the US, hot-rolled coil delivery lead times are short. There has been something of a stand-off since the domestic mills announced a $US40 per short ton increase, with buyers waiting and watching to see how disciplined the producers will be. However, the initiative by the steelmakers does, at least, appear to have halted the recent negative movements.
STEEL PRICE INCREASES CHECKED IN MOST PARTS OF THE WORLD
02 May, 2011
US strip mill product transaction values are relatively stable with just some minor upward movement. This follows several months of escalation, much of which was driven by the mills
STEEL PRICE TREND TURNS NEGATIVE IN NORTHERN EUROPE
22 April, 2011
Prices for strip mill products in northern Europe have begun to soften in recent weeks. There had been some speculative buying as selling figures climbed earlier this year but now stock levels are high and customers are more cautious.
EU price hikes have run out of steam
20 April, 2011
Steel price rises have stalled in the European market. Increased selling values sought by the domestic producers have not been implemented and figures have, in fact, slipped.
Scrap and billet market roundup: CIS exporters of billet faced tougher trading conditions in traditional overseas markets in March
11 April, 2011
Suppliers operating in the Caspian Sea and Far East ports issued lower quotations, following negative price sentiment and a shortage of active buyers.
China Steel Insight - new report with two free copies offer
08 April, 2011
China
Global flat steel products see 3.3% price rise, but China and Turkey buck the trend
06 April, 2011
Flat product steel prices around the world rose this month. The increases were attributed to the high cost of raw materials. However, real demand has not improved and many customers have been unwilling to accept the large mill list price hikes. Out of the 28 countries MEPS (International) Ltd. conducts price investigations for, only China and Turkey recorded negative selling figures in March.
March's nickel price collapse unsettles stainless steel market
06 April, 2011
The LME nickel price plummeted from nearly US$29,000 per tonne on 5 March to just above US$25,000 per tonne on March 15. This will create negative pressure on stainless steel transaction values in the near term. In Europe, the alloy surcharge for type 304 flat products in April is down by between
Emerging nations: led by Brazil, rising input costs exert upward pressure on steel prices
03 April, 2011
According to MEPS' Developing Markets Steel Review, in Brazil, effective prices of finished steel products were raised at the beginning of March. This was achieved through a reduction in the concessions granted in late 2010. Concerns remain that aggressive pricing positions will only reinvigorate import activity. Inventories are forecast to fall to the normal level of two and a half months during April.
Indian steel prices see 2% rise in March, despite uncertain market conditions
30 March, 2011
While the average gain of flat product prices in India, this month, was 2%, procurement activity was weaker than expected, according to MEPS' new Indian Steel Price series, which are used as an independent reference price for steel purchasing. Price and index tables offer the latest domestic ex-mill prices, updated on a monthly basis.
EU steel prices stall as customers sit on the sidelines
25 March, 2011
There is something of an impasse in the west European flat products market as customers prefer to sit on the sidelines rather than place business at the inflated prices being demanded by the domestic producers. Consequently, order intake at the mills is slow. Many companies have stocks that are adequate for now.
Future Chinese demand for iron ore could have been under-estimated by over 100 mt
23 March, 2011
Under-reporting in the Chinese steel industry means that market analysts could have under-estimated China
Indian steel prices rose sharply in February 2011
06 March, 2011
India, steel product quotations increased dramatically in February. The price rises have been attributed to successive hikes in raw material costs.
MEPS global steel price index jumps ten percent in February 2011
06 March, 2011
Good overall demand helped mills in all regions to implement price hikes in February as they attempted to recover their escalating input costs. Weakening of the US dollar against many Asian and EU currencies added to the upward trend in the calculated MEPS average transaction values.
Nickel traders, not market fundamentals, driving stainless steel prices, says MEPS
02 March, 2011
Stainless steel basis prices are increasing, on top of a rapid climb in alloy surcharges over recent months, although there has been no significant upturn in real demand reported from any part of the world.
New monthly scrap & semi-finished steel report from MEPS
28 February, 2011
Ferrous scrap transaction values fell in the European Union and India in February. Effective selling figures in the US domestic market also declined. The downward movement was the result of smaller buying volumes by local mills. Most purchased a substantial quantity of material in January.
Steel prices continue to shadow raw materials costs in the BRIC countries
28 February, 2011
The average increase of BRIC nation steel prices, published by MEPS (International), was 4.2 percent in February. The main driver for this was the large hikes witnessed in Russia.
North-American market eases as production costs escalate
25 October, 2010
Although raw steel output was climbing steadily as blast furnaces were relit, the economy remained depressed, leading to a persistently low level of steel consumption.
North American Market eases as production costs escalate
01 September, 2010
The latest trends from MEPS in hot rolled coil, hot rolled plate, cold rolled coil, coated coils, medium sections and bars, reinforcing bars and merchant bars.
January world stainless steel prices slip but upturn believed to be imminent
05 February, 2010
Raw material costs, end-user demand and the aims of the producers have all influenced the stainless steel market, which currently appears to be at something of a crossroads. Demand in Korea, Taiwan and China has been much less influenced by the recession in the West. Stainless steel production has continued at levels much closer to full capacity than has been the case in Europe or North America, where the post-recession pick-up in demand is eagerly awaited.
Global steel price jumps in January by three percentage points
28 January, 2010
While a flurry of mill price hike announcements in December has translated into substantially higher transaction values for business recently settled in the US, the weak currency should help to keep overseas material at bay for some time to come.
Average steel price in developing markets is pushed hire by raw materials costs
27 January, 2010
The steel market activity is reviewed in a range of markets in the developing world, including Turkey, UAE, India, South Africa, Brazil, Mexico, the CIS and the Ukraine.
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