Steel Products Prices North America

Comparison Price Indices: Double Down

Written by John Packard

Flat rolled steel prices plummeted again this past week according to the steel indexes followed by Steel Market Update.  All four indexes reported pricing this week. The range from low to high on benchmark hot rolled coil was $480 to $495 per ton with SMU at the low end of the range and SteelBenchmarker at the upper end (SteelBenchmarker only produces numbers twice per month).

HRC, according to the SMU index average, is down $205 per ton since prices peaked back in May 2014. Its been a long, and lately wild ride down.

Cold rolled prices ranged from $610 to $636 per ton with all indexes adjusting by double digits, with the exception of CRU which was down $5 per ton. Back in May 2014 cold rolled was selling in the spot market at $810 per ton, $200 per ton above last week’s levels.

Out of curiosity we went back and reviewed the recent past to see when was the last time prices fell by $200 per ton or more. The answer was back in 2011 and when prices bounced back, they rose by $125 per ton (HRC) and $120 per ton on cold rolled.

Here is what the various indexes presented for average pricing on hot rolled, cold rolled, galvanized, Galvalume and plate this past week.

FOB Points for each index:

SMU: Domestic Mill, East of the Rockies.
CRU: Midwest Mill, East of the Rockies.
SteelBenchmarker: Domestic Mill, East of the Mississippi.
Platts: Northern Indiana Domestic Mill.

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