Steel Products Prices North America

April Import Licenses Suggest a Whopper of a Month (Close to 4 Million Net Tons)

Written by John Packard

February and its 2.477 million tons of foreign steel imports seems like a long way off, based on the new license data released by the U.S. Department of Commerce earlier this week. According to the license data, April is trending to come in just shy of 4 million net tons (3,879,350 tons).

Semi-finished steels are poised to come in around 1 million net tons (approximately 25 percent of the total). Finished steels are just shy of 3 million net tons.

As you can see by our graphic below, all the products except cut plate are trending toward beating the 12-month moving average as well as the 3-month moving average.

A word about license data: The April number is still only a projection based on license data received through Tuesday, May 1, 2018. The actual number can vary +/- 200,000 tons. We believe the final census numbers for April will be somewhere from 3.7 million to 3.9 million net tons.

Second note: We published some incorrect numbers last Thursday and then corrected them in Sunday evening’s issue. We saw a note from one of our readers who didn’t understand the error. The U.S. Department of Commerce normally updates the license data every Tuesday around 5 PM. Last week they did not update all the numbers until later that evening and that threw off our routine. The table below shows the weekly trending data and last week’s error (with the red line through it).

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