Steel Products Prices North America

AK Steel Takes Flat Rolled Steel Prices Up Another $30

Written by John Packard

AK Steel kept their press release announcing their new flat rolled steel pricing short and sweet: “West Chester, OH, January 13, 2016—AK Steel (NYSE: AKS) said today that it will increase current spot market base prices for all carbon flat-rolled steel products by $30 per ton, effective immediately with new orders.”

Here is what their announcement means as we go back to their last announcement when the mill spelled out the expected base prices to be collected on hot rolled, cold rolled and galvanized spot purchases.

On December 9, 2015 AK Steel advised the following minimum base prices: hot rolled = $420 per ton, cold rolled = $540 per ton and galvanized = $550 per ton.

With their latest announcement (which was made on Wednesday, January 13, 2016) the base prices are increased to:

hot rolled = $450 per ton ($22.50/cwt)

cold rolled = $570 per ton ($28.50/cwt)

galvanized = $580 per ton ($29.00/cwt)

AK Steel has not been an overly active participant in the spot markets over the past few months and their prices are going to be at the high end of the range being mentioned as being available in the marketplace.

A buyer told SMU on Wednesday evening when commenting on the latest round of price increases and specifically where US Steel and AK Steel are fitting into the spot market, “It seems to me like USS and AK are irrelevant in the non-automotive flat rolled market right now.”

A service center buyer spoke with Steel Market Update on Thursday afternoon who told us that the latest moves by the domestic mills to increase pricing, “It forces people offshore” and we were told that the percentage of foreign on their order book would be going up. The reason being, “Our business is not being supported by the domestic mills, they need to be priced globally competitively…but they would rather pay attorneys [in an effort to keep foreign steel out].”

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