Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard


On a personal note I want to wish Joel Mazur much success in his new position as President of CENTRIA. For those of you who do not know this, Joel Mazur was president of Winner Steel while I was still an agent for the steel mill (Winner Steel is now called Sharon Coatings and is part of the NLMK USA group).

Our next Steel 101: Introduction to Steelmaking & Market Fundamentals workshop will be held in Canada in early June. We have just received confirmation from ArcelorMittal Dofasco that our group is welcome to tour their fully integrated steel mill. Our workshop will be headquartered at a local Hamilton, Ontario, Canada hotel. We will advise the exact dates in early June for the two day workshop once the mill has advised us of their maintenance schedule. Hamilton, Ontario, Canada is located across the border from Buffalo, New York. U.S. citizens will need to bring your passports to cross into Canada.

We still have openings in our next Managing Price Risk workshop which will be held in New York City on April 26th. Details can be found on our website: www.SteelMarketUpdate.com or you can contact our office: info@SteelMarketUpdate.com

By the way – has anybody seen spring anywhere…?

Thank you to everyone who completed our steel survey.  Next one will begin on April 1st (no kidding).

As always we truly appreciate your business – thank you.

Latest in Final Thoughts

Final thoughts

I’ve had discussions with some of you lately about where and when sheet prices might bottom. Some of you say that hot-rolled (HR) coil prices won’t fall below $800 per short ton (st). Others tell me that bigger buyers aren’t interested unless they can get something that starts with a six. Obviously a lot depends on whether we're talking 50 tons or 50,000 tons. I've even gotten some guff about how the drop in US prices is happening only because we’re talking about it happening.

Final thoughts

We’ve all heard a lot about mill “discipline” following a wave of consolidation over the last few years. That discipline is often evident when prices are rising, less so when they are falling. I remember hearing earlier this year that mills weren’t going to let hot-rolled (HR) coil prices fall below $1,000 per short ton (st). Then not below $900/st. Now, some of you tell me that HR prices in the mid/high-$800s are the “1-800 price” – widely available to regular spot buyers. So what comes next, and will mills “hold the line” in the $800s?