Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

With the Wheatland Tube filing of a complaint against China using the ENFORCE Act we are about to enter the next stage of trade complaints. The Wheatland complaint is for circumvention of duties that already exist against Chinese products, so it will be interesting how quickly this first test case takes and will Customs and Border Protection find in favor of the U.S. manufacturer. We will be watching this closely in the coming weeks (and months).

I believe we have two to maybe up to four seats left for our next Steel 101: Introduction to Steel Making and Market Fundamentals workshop which will be held in Memphis, Tennessee and will include a tour of the brand new Big River Steel (BRS) steel mill. The dates are November 15-16, 2016. You can learn more about the workshop on our website: or by contacting our office at 800-432-3475.

A note to those attending FABTECH and/or the ASD Annual Conference both in Las Vegas at the end of that same week as our Steel 101 workshop. John Eckstein (one of our Steel 101 instructors) and I will be teaching a “mini” Steel 101 workshop at the Las Vegas Convention Center as part of FABTECH. Our class will be from 8 AM until 10 AM on Friday, November 18th. I hope to attend at least a portion of the ASD meeting as well.

Brett is on vacation for a couple of days. If you need to reach me you can do so by calling 800-432-3475. If you want to reach Diana (pay a bill or have questions about your account) she can be reached at 772-932-7538.

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

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.

Final thoughts

We’ve all heard a lot about mill “discipline” following a wave of consolidation over the last few years. That discipline is often evident when prices are rising, less so when they are falling. I remember hearing earlier this year that mills weren’t going to let hot-rolled (HR) coil prices fall below $1,000 per short ton (st). Then not below $900/st. Now, some of you tell me that HR prices in the mid/high-$800s are the “1-800 price” – widely available to regular spot buyers. So what comes next, and will mills “hold the line” in the $800s?