Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard


The last couple of days have been hectic as we worked through the articles seen in tonight’s newsletter as well as numerous articles that we are working on various topics. The two headline articles are, of course, the next round of flat rolled price increases. The Nucor $20 hot rolled and $30 cold rolled and coated is fairly modest and is being well received by most SMU spoke with today. It is, of course, too early to tell what impact it could have but we heard from one coated service center that they were being quoted base prices as high as $28.50/cwt from at least one mill supplier (at the top end of our range that would be a $30 per ton price increase).

As the month has progressed, the amount being paid for shredded and even heavy melt grades of scrap can vary by quite a bit. We were reading a Mike Marley piece (World Steel Dynamics) earlier this evening about the prices paid for shredded scrap ($225), busheling ($215) and heavy melt ($205) by mills in the Southeast. The order books have improved at the mini-mills and they need the scrap.

The second major story over the past 24 hours is the countervailing duty (CVD) preliminary determination on hot rolled coil which was announced on Monday. The main story there is Brazil got hit with both CVD and critical circumstances and will be required to pay a cash deposit on steel that arrived in mid-October all the way through the publication of the details in the Federal Register (and future orders as well). Turkey and South Korea both were found to be de minimis (less than 1 percent) or having no subsidies what-so-ever.

We have an article in tonight’s newsletter where we provide details as to the history of HRC exports out of Brazil, Turkey and Korea. You may find some of that data interesting.

For those of you who are registering (and the holidays are over and our registrations are starting to pick up) for the Leadership Summit Conference, if you are interested in playing golf at the PGA National Resort, whether on the Champions Course or another one of their golf courses, please contact Ray Culley at: Ray.Culley@SteelMarketUpdate.com. We have a few tee times reserved and he can assist in putting foursomes together.

We know there are a lot of options for conferences at this time of the year. We have put together a tremendous program that hits a number of key issues for managers who are with companies that have an exposure to the steel industry. We know the issues of managing Millennials (and mixed generation work forces), Creating Competitive Advantage (this is a must for most service centers but many manufacturing companies as well), understanding and using social media and the legal ramifications associated with social media (and employers/employees) are timely and important topics. We have Lewis Liebowitz who will help everyone understand the antidumping and countervailing duty process, changes in the laws and what companies can do to protect their interests. We also have the top people in the steel industry involved with new steels not only for the automotive industries but also for construction. We think you will be interested in learning what the industry is doing to expand the uses of high strength steels and the new steels in the process of being developed. It is unusual to have the president of the SMDI along with John Hopkins University who have partnered in this project. Is your company interested in light-weighting or perhaps offering options to your customers to separate your company from the competition?

You can register online or feel free to contact our offices: 800-432-3475. I think this conference will be one you do not want to miss…

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

John Packard, Publisher

Latest in Final Thoughts

Final thoughts

What's the tea in the steel industry this week? Here's the latest SMU gossip column! Just kidding... kind of. Yes, some of the comments we receive in our weekly flat-rolled market steel buyers' survey are honestly too much to put into print. Some make us laugh. Some make us cringe. Some are cryptic. Most are serious. We appreciate them all. Below are some highlights from our survey results this week. Some of the comments that we can share with you are also included, in italics, in the buyers' own words, with minimal editing on our part.

Final thoughts

Unless you've been under a rock, you know by know that Nucor's published HR price for this week is $760 per short ton, down $65/st from the company’s $825/st a week ago. I could use more colorful words. But I think it’s safe to say that most of the market was not expecting this. For starters, US sheet mills never announce price decreases. (OK, not never. It has come to my attention that Severstal North America rescinded a price increase back on Feb. 14, 2012. And it caused quite the ruckus.)