June 7, 2017 / 7:52 AM / in 5 months

Shanghai rebar ekes out gains after 9-day slide, but outlook weak

    * China steel market remains "very, very slow" - CRU
    * Dalian iron ore steady amid ample supply
    * Iron ore shipments to China from Port Hedland hit record

 (Adds Port Hedland shipments to China, updates prices)
    By Manolo Serapio Jr
    MANILA, June 7 (Reuters) - Chinese steel futures edged up on
Wednesday after a nine-day fall, although the outlook for demand
in the world's top consumer remained weak.
    The price recovery, which follows an 11 percent decline
since May 22, may be technical in nature, said Richard Lu,
analyst at CRU consultancy.
    "We think the current market remains very, very slow. The
recent price slump should make buyers hesitant to buy because
the price can go down again so they just want to slow down
purchases," he said.
    The most-active rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange
         closed up 0.7 percent at 2,962 yuan ($436) a tonne. The
construction steel product touched a one-month low on Tuesday.
    Construction activity usually eases in China during summer,
curbing steel consumption.
    On the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the most-traded iron ore
contract           gained 0.1 percent to 432.50 yuan per tonne.
    Supply of the steelmaking raw material remains high in
    Imported iron ore at the country's ports reached 136.55
million tonnes as of June 2, only down slightly from the
previous week's 136.6 million tonnes which was the most for the
stockpiles since 2004, based on data compiled by SteelHome
consultancy. SH-TOT-IRONINV
    Last month, iron ore shipments to China from Australia's
Port Hedland terminal, used by top suppliers BHP Billiton
         and Fortescue Metals Group         , rose to a record
38 million tonnes from 34.86 million tonnes in April. 
    Spot iron ore prices regained some lost ground on Tuesday
after falling to near eight-month lows in the previous day.
    Iron ore for delivery to China's Qingdao port .IO62-CNO=MB
rose 0.2 percent to $56.03 a tonne, according to Metal Bulletin.
($1 = 6.7926 Chinese yuan)

 (Reporting by Manolo Serapio Jr.; Editing by Richard Pullin and
Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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