Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

As the publisher of Steel Market Update I get a lot of questions on a daily basis from readers and those who come across our website. Usually its about a piece of data or something having to do with one of our workshops. I got a question yesterday from someone who wanted to know what was the lowest average monthly price for hot rolled during the past 30 years (1985-2015)? Since SMU did not exist as a company 30 years ago I did some research and found the answer to be $205 per ton ($10.25/cwt) in November 2001. If you remember back to that point in time, this was when a number of steel mills were about to go out of business.

I did a little more research and found out that 2001 had the lowest average annual selling price for hot rolled coil going back to 1980 which was the earliest I could find data (USGS). The yearly average was $227 per ton ($11.35/cwt).

I was asked another question this afternoon by a manufacturing company who is concerned about what impact a dumping suit filing could have on his product (which is galvanized steel). Much of this manufacturer’s substrate is ultra light gauge and foreign in origin. Here is a portion of my response to his query:

The dumping suits would be on the inbound coils – in your case galvanized steel coils.

You would need to be concerned if:

1)    You are the importer of record.
2)    You have a contract which states you are responsible for any duties.
3)    You have orders on the books with countries being filed against and the delivery is after the grace period (your trading company would most likely want to cancel those tons).

When the suit is filed, there generally is a grace period during which inbound shipments are not eligible for duties.

Once that time passes, the importer of record (usually the trading company with which you are doing business) would have to put up a bond to cover any possible duties which could be collected in the future.

A couple of things you may want to do:

1)    if you go to the search function at the top of the SMU website and type in “dumping suits” you should come up with a list which will include articles by David Phelps and attorney Lewis Leibowitz (you can also type in their names along with Roger Schagrin who is another attorney who specializes in this field). You want to read those (one was published on the 19th of March 2015 and a second on the 21st of March 2015 ).

2)    Talk to your trading company to see what recommendations or concerns they may have about their suppliers. For example, I would not expect South Africa to be included in any suit brought against China, India or South Korea.

3)    Attend our Steel Summit Conference Sept 1 & 2, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia – we will have Lewis Leibowitz there to answer any questions you might have should a suit be filed.

4)    Attend our Leadership Forum at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, FL in March 2016. We will have extended programs where executives can get into more detail and be able to interact with our speakers. One of the programs will be on international trade with attorney Lewis Leibowitz advising on what you need to know about trade law, AD/CVD suits, changes to the laws, free trade, etc.

The search function on our website is very robust. The function is located in the very top right hand corner of our Home Page (type in the black field and then click on search). The way it works is when we produce an article we put in as many words or phrases that we can think of should someone want to search for that article. So, when looking for anti-dumping articles you can type in: AD, anti-dumping, dumping, CVD, countervailing duties as well as people’s names referenced in the articles such as Lewis Leibowitz. If you are looking for something give it a try.

This morning I received a call from a large recycling company who didn’t know me from Adam but my name came up in conversation with a couple of his steel customers who recommended me. What he wanted to know had to do with the preparations he was making for the company’s board of directors meeting within the next day or two. He wanted to know what was going to happen in the steel industry in the coming months because it definitely impacted their business. This question is one of the reasons why Steel Market Update exists in the first place. We want to be one of your key sources of information as you and your company determine what you are going to do over the coming month(s). I ended up sending him a couple of recent issues because we had written articles dealing with service center inventories, demand, mill issues, iron ore costs, etc. which were all important to understanding what is going to happen next.

Our Steel Summit Conference in September is also focused on not only what is happening today but what experts are forecasting for the next few months as well as all of 2016. Keep the dates of September 1 & 2, 2015 circled on your calendar as two days you will want to be in Atlanta at our conference. More details to follow very soon. Sponsorship spots are also available (and our booth program) send me an email and I will forward you our brochure on sponsorships for the Steel Summit Conference. I can be reached at:

Speaking of conferences – I will be at the Metals Industry Dinner for the Chicago Boy Scouts of America on May 14, 2015 at the Hyatt Regency Chicago. Details about the dinner and registration can be found here.

I will be back in Chicago the following week for our Steel 101: Introduction to Steel Making & Market Fundamentals workshop. The workshop still has room for more people – you can learn more details about our program, instructors, where it is being held, the dates (May 19-20, 2015), the mill tour (NLMK Indiana) and how much it costs to attend on our website in the Events section of the site or just click here.

I will also be in New York City on June 8-10, 2015 which are the dates associated with Steel Success Strategies. On Monday, June 8th I will be at the Bank of America dinner hosted by Timna Tanners.

As always your business is truly appreciated by all of us here at Steel Market Update.

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