Cement volumes crack most in a decade
Latest data shows cement volumes in February 2017 declined the most in over a decade by 15.8% year-on-year (YoY). Volumes have declined by 5% month-on-month.
India Ratings notes that the decline in cement growth is also on account of a high base last year; during January-March 2016 cement production grew by 9.2%, 13.5% and 11.9% year-on-year respectively. India Ratings estimates cement production will be muted in 4QFY17.
On the prices front, the wholesale price index of grey cement and slag cement has shown a softening trend through November 2016-Janaury 2017. Cement players got some respite on the cost front, with pet-coke and coal prices showing moderation in January and February 2017, after pet-coke prices almost doubled since March 2016.