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US steel import in April up by 15% MoM

By unknow , 2008-06-04 12:00:00

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Based on preliminary Census Bureau data, the American Iron and Steel Institute reported that the US imported a total of 2.944 million net tons of steel in April 2008, including 2.194 million net ton of finished steel up by 15% MoM and 4% MoM respectively.

Total and finished steel imports through the first four months of 2008 are down 7% and 9% respectively vs the same period in 2007. However, the monthly average for finished steel imports in the most the February to April 2008 period is up 8% as compared to monthly average in the previous November 2007 to January 2008. Total and finished steel imports on an annualized basis are down 4 and 5 percent, respectively, vs. 2007. On an annualized basis, total imports of steel in 2008 would be 32 million net tons.

Key products with large increases in April compared to the month before include:
1. Ingots and Billets and Slabs up by 64%
2. Hot Rolled Sheets up by 40%
3. Reinforcing Bar up by 30%
4. Wire Rods up by 92%
5. Plates in Coil up by 33%
6. Cold Finished Bar up by 32%

For the first four months of 2008, products showing increases vs. the same period in 2007 were
1. Line Pipe up by 26%
2. Oil Country Goods up by 18%
3. Heavy Structural Shapes up by 10%

Mr. Dave Phelps president of AIIS said that imports increased in April to 2.943 million tons up 14.5% from March. While one month a trend does not make, this welcome positive development for April will bring some relief to domestic consumers, who have been struggling with low inventories and rapid fire price increases in 2008.”

He added that “Import arrivals in late 2007 and early 2008 were clearly too low for our cur customers given the inability of the domestic industry to meet total demand. The largest increases in April in finished products were hot rolled sheet and wire rods, both products that have been in tight supply in 2008. The large increase in slabs will likewise increase finished product deliveries for the domestic mills, adding needed steel to the marketplace.”

Mr Phelps concluded that “We hope that this trend will be sustained as we go deeper into the second quarter.”

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