Steel reinforcement-bar futures traded near the highest level in six months amid optimism that demand for the building material will rise as China boosts spending on infrastructure.
Rebar for delivery in May rose as much as 0.4 percent to 4,020 yuan ($646) a metric ton on the Shanghai Futures Exchange, before trading at 4,013 at 2:28 p.m. local time. Futures reached 4,047 yesterday, the highest since July 10.
The world’s second-largest economy is showing signs of recovering from a slowdown that spanned the seven quarters to Sept. 30, with data from manufacturing to retail sales and industrial production indicating expansion over the past two months. China’s economy is poised to grow 8.1 percent this year, from 7.7 percent in 2012, according to the median estimates of 49 economists surveyed by Bloomberg last month.
“The demand outlook for steel products will remain bullish for a long time,” according to a report by Guangfa Futures Co. today. “The government will continue to boost the economy by accelerating urbanization and there’s now recovery in the real estate market.”
Spot iron ore at Tianjin port rose 0.4 percent to $153.90 a dry ton yesterday, the highest since Oct. 14, 2011, data compiled by The Steel Index Ltd. showed. The average spot price for rebar advanced 2.7 percent to 3,774 yuan a ton yesterday, the highest since Oct. 15, according to data from Beijing Antaike Information Development Co.
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