We will begin our next flat rolled steel market analysis with an invitation to participate in our questionnaire going out at 8 AM on Monday morning. If you receive an invite please take a few minutes to click on the link and complete the questionnaire.
Steel Market Update will be moving our headquarters over the next couple of weeks. We anticipate being set up and operating out of our new offices in Hobe Sound, Florida by November 1st. We do not expect any issues with any of our publications, workshops, conferences or our website as we make the transition further south. We will be in our Georgia offices all this week and I am not scheduled to travel anywhere this week so I can be reached at 800-432-3475 or by email at John@SteelMarketUpdate.com should you have any questions or just want to chat.
My next speaking engagement is at the Cowen & Company conference which will be held in New York City on November 10th and 11th. Then I will be speaking at the Steel Meeting at the HARDI convention which will be in Orlando, Florida on December 5-8th.
Our next Steel 101: Introduction to Steel Making & Market Fundamentals workshop will be held in Starkville, Mississippi on January 19-20, 2016 and will include a tour of the SDI Columbus steel mill. Registration is open for the January program. If you have any questions please contact us in our office: info@SteelMarketUpdate.com or 800-432-3475.
In March we will host our first Leadership Conference at PGA National Golf Club & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. The dates are March 7-9th and more details will be coming out soon.
The dates for next year’s Steel Summit Conference will be August 30-31, 2016 and it will be in Atlanta, Georgia. Mark your calendars now as we are expecting another great crowd of steel people.
Early reports are saying ferrous scrap prices will move sideways to slightly lower ($0-$20) once we get into November. October prices were down $50 to $60 per gross ton.
We have three steel plants who are either in the process of being shut down (Fairfield except for coating line) or have received WARN notices: USS Granite City and AK Steel Ashland. The Granite City and Ashland plants are not for sure yet. US Steel gave the Granite City WARN notices earlier this year and then did not follow through on them. Restriction of supply is one possible way of getting prices to reverse direction. We will continue to watch the developments as they occur.
As always your business is truly appreciated by all of us here at Steel Market Update.
John Packard, Publisher
John PackardRead more from John Packard
Latest in Final Thoughts
A clear consensus has emerged among respondents to SMU’s latest steel market survey that hot-rolled (HR) coil prices will bottom this month or in April. Seventy-five percent of respondents to our latest survey think that prices will find a floor before May as the chart below shows:
I want to give a big shoutout to the good folks at the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association (FMA) for inviting me to their annual conference this week in Clearwater, Fla. I also want to give a special thanks to the FMA for awarding SMU founder John Packard with a lifetime achievement award – on that also gave me a chance to catch up with my old boss in person.
What are some “Black Swans” to watch out for? With the war in Ukraine entering its third year, your mind might understandably move to conflicts overseas. Here is one closer to home to consider: US trade relations with Mexico taking a turn for the worse. I mention that because the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) dropped a (virtual) bombshell earlier this month.
Domestic prices have been sliding since the beginning of the year, and I don’t see any obvious reasons why the slide might stop this week. But let’s put the timing of a bottom aside for a minute. The question among some of you seems to be whether we’ll see another price spike, or at least a “dead-cat bounce,” before the typical summer doldrums kick in.
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.