Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

For the ultimate prognosticators out there, individual tax returns were due today (April 17) by midnight. The IRS has had computer issues today and has extended the deadline to April 18 at midnight.

coils2The Metals Service Center Institute inventories and shipment article in tonight’s issue will be the last one Steel Market Update will produce. The MSCI came out with new pricing and rules associated with the dissemination of service center inventories and shipment information. We were advised that the price of the product is now $10,000 per year, and SMU is not able to justify that expense without a significant groundswell of protest from our readers. If you would like for us to continue to publish the MSCI data, and wish for us to gather more information as to what will be allowed and what won’t, please contact me at

As most of you know, SMU has our own service center months of supply index, which we publish in both a “Flash” report, a few days after the close of the month, and then later on as a full report. Our report has steel distributor inventories as being higher than what is being reported by the MSCI as of the end of March. Our service center inventories (flat rolled and soon plate) product will move to our Premium service later this summer. With the move by the MSCI, we will be working on expanding the data that we are collecting, increasing the number of service centers participating, and we will be working toward new data that is not being provided by the MSCI.

I knew when I started collecting service center inventory data that this would be a long-term project and could take well over a year to work out the bugs and then to gradually expand our services. I started the project in August 2017 compiling data from July 2017. The project is going as I expected when it was first started. We believe we will be introducing some surprises with this data in the coming months. Stay tuned.

Registrations for the 2018 SMU Steel Summit Conference have blasted through the 300 executives level and we continue to get multiple registrations daily. Here are some of the companies who registered on Monday of this week (those with an asterisk * denote more than one person registered from that company): Ryerson*, Nucor*, California Steel Industries, CSN LLC*, O’Neal Steel*, Agway Metals, Lozier Corp, Phillips Mfg., Hanwa American, Nucor Fabricated Products, Jensen Bridge and Supply*, Prassas Metal Products, Plateplus*, New Process Steel*, Harris Steel Company*, Hubbell* and Material Sciences Corp*.

There are 131 days to go before the start of the 2018 conference, so you have plenty of time to register and to convince your customers and suppliers that they need to be at THE place to see and be seen in the industry.

I expect our room blocks at the Marriott Gateway, Renaissance Gateway and SpringHill Suites Gateway will be gone by the end of this month, if not sooner. We are working with Marriott to block another hotel the next exit south on I-85 from Camp Creek Parkway and arrange for a shuttle to the convention center. I will let you know when that is done and available. There will also be more rooms available at the three hotels in the Gateway (convention center) complex outside of our room block. However, the price of the rooms could go well into the mid $200’s.

You can learn more about our 8th SMU Steel Summit Conference on our website by going to or you can contact our offices at 772-932-7538 or by email at

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

John Packard, Publisher

Latest in Final Thoughts