Steel Products Prices North America

February Raw Steel Production: Utilization Rate at 3.5-Year High

Written by Brett Linton

Total raw steel production for the month of February was 7,266,355 net tons, with 5,087,819 tons produced by electric arc furnaces (EAFs) and 2,178,536 tons produced by blast furnaces. February raw steel production was 329,268 tons or 4.3 percent lower than the previous month, but 185,893 tons or 2.6 percent higher than the same month last year, reports the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) in Washington. AISI’s monthly estimates are different than the weekly estimates we report; the monthly estimates are based on over 75 percent of the domestic mills reporting versus only 50 percent reporting for the weekly estimates.

As seen in the table below, eight of the 11 state groups reported a decrease in month-over-month production, and six of the 11 state groups reported a decrease in production compared to the same month last year.

The chart below shows total monthly steel production (blue) broken down by electric arc furnace production (green) and blast furnace production (red).

The mill capacity utilization rate for February 2018 was 77.9 percent, up from 73.6 percent in January, and up from 75.9 percent one year ago. This is the highest rate since September 2014, back when 8,048,954 tons were produced at a capcity utilization rate of 78.1 percent.

SMU Note: Interactive versions of the raw steel production graphics above (and more) can be seen in the Analysis section of our website here. If you need assistance logging in to or navigating the website, contact Brett at 706-216-2140 or

Brett Linton

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