Steel Products Prices North America

November Apparent Steel Supply Remains Above 9 Million Tons

Written by Brett Linton

November apparent steel supply was calculated at 9,140,649 net tons, according to data released late last week. Apparent steel supply is determined by adding domestic steel shipments and finished U.S. steel imports, then subtracting total U.S. steel exports.

November apparent steel supply saw a 417,102 ton or 4.8 percent increase compared to the same month one year ago. This change was primarily due to an increase in domestic shipments of 412,146 tons or 5.6 percent. A decrease in finished imports of 261,890 tons or 12.0 percent was neutralized by a decrease in total exports of 266,846 tons or 30.2 percent.

The net trade balance between U.S. steel imports and exports was a surplus of 1,765,615 tons imported in November, down 113,535 tons or 6.0 percent from the prior month, and down 880,740 tons or 33.3 percent from one year ago. Foreign steel imports accounted for 21.1 percent of apparent steel supply in November, unchanged from the prior month, and down from 25.1 percent one year ago.

Compared to the prior month when apparent steel supply was 9,557,437 tons, November supply fell by 416,788 tons or 4.4 percent. This was due to a decrease in domestic shipments of 342,662 tons or 4.2 percent and a decrease in finished imports of 89,395 tons or 4.4 percent, slightly lessened by a decrease in total exports of 15,269 tons or 2.4 percent.

The figure below shows year-to-date totals for each statistic over the last five years. The 2018 data was previously steady to higher compared to the prior two years, but has been mixed since the summer months.

To see an interactive graphic of our Apparent Steel Supply history (example below), visit the Apparent Steel Supply page in the Analysis section of the SMU website. If you need any assistance logging in or navigating the website, contact us at or 800-432-3475.

Brett Linton

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