* Shanghai rebar drops to weakest since February
* Spot iron ore falls to lowest since Nov, down 16 pct this
By Manolo Serapio Jr
MANILA, April 18 Iron ore futures in China fell
more than 3 percent on Tuesday to their weakest level since
January, pressured by a sustained drop in steel prices amid
Shanghai rebar slipped to 10-week lows as output in the
world's top steel producing country showed no signs of abating
despite tepid demand and government efforts to cut capacity.
The most-traded iron ore on the Dalian Commodity Exchange
was down 3.3 percent at 484 yuan ($70) a tonne by 0252
GMT, just off a session trough of 483 yuan, its lowest since
The most-active rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange
was down 2.7 percent at 2,854 yuan per tonne, also near
its session low of 2,851 yuan, its weakest since Feb. 7.
"Oversupply concerns in China's steel market curbed demand"
for raw material iron ore, Commonwealth Bank of Australia
analyst Vivek Dhar said in a note.
China's crude steel output reached a record 72 million
tonnes in March as mills ramped up output in anticipation of a
pickup in demand that has remained slow, government data
released on Monday showed.
A more than doubling in premium coking coal prices since
Cyclone Debbie hit top producer Australia last month has also
squeezed margins of Chinese steel mills, further reducing their
appetite to purchase iron ore, wrote Dhar.
"In any case, steel market-related weakness will continue to
push iron ore demand lower," he said, adding that iron ore
supply is also rising, including from marginal exporters that
responded to the early-year rally in prices. The bank has
forecast iron ore to drop to $60 by the December quarter.
Iron ore for delivery to China's Qingdao port .IO62-CNO=MB
slid 3.5 percent to $66.25 a tonne on Monday, according to Metal
That was the lowest level since November for the spot
benchmark which has lost 16 percent this year.
($1 = 6.8907 Chinese yuan)
(Reporting by Manolo Serapio Jr.; Editing by Tom Hogue)