SMU Data and Models

Mill Lead Times & Negotiations

Written by John Packard

Mill lead times, according to those taking our SMU steel market survey this week, continue to be extended compared to where they were one year ago. However, we found (based on our survey results) that the mills have become more willing to negotiate on hot rolled, galvanized and Galvalume but not on cold rolled.

Hot rolled averaged 4.09 weeks, down from 4.25 weeks at the beginning of January but well above the 3.38 weeks reported during the middle of January 2013.

Cold rolled lead times moved out (extended) to 6.41 weeks from the 6.25 weeks reported at the beginning of the New Year and are much longer than the 4.91 weeks we saw at this same point in time last year.

Galvanized lead times averaged 5.98 weeks, down from 6.25 weeks from the first week of January but well above the 4.91 weeks reported during mid-January 2013.

Galvalume continues to have the longest lead times at 6.70 weeks (average), down slightly from the 6.75 weeks reported in our last survey but well above the 5.82 weeks measured during the middle of January 2013.

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{amchart id=”112″ SMU Lead Times by Product}

Mill Negotiations

The percentage of those in the flat rolled steel community reporting the domestic mills as more willing to negotiate pricing on hot rolled, galvanized and Galvalume were much higher in this week’s survey than that of any time over the past few months. You would have to go back to late 3rd Quarter to get higher percentages on hot rolled and Galvalume. Cold rolled, however, continues to be an item with minimal variations from the requested pricing.

The percentage reporting hot rolled prices as negotiable rose from 35 percent in early January to 63 percent this week. This is an increase of 28 percent over a two week period.

The percentage reporting cold rolled prices as negotiable declined from 31 percent to 19 percent.

The percentage reporting galvanized prices as negotiable rose from 38 percent to 61 percent (+23 percent).

The percentage reporting Galvalume prices as negotiable rose from 20 percent to 44 percent (+24 percent).






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