Steel Products Prices North America

Regional Imports Through August: Cold Rolled Coil

Written by Peter Wright

Steel Market Update offers a comprehensive series of import reports ranging from the first look at licensed data to a detailed look at volume by district of entry and source nation. This report, on cold rolled coil, is designed to plug the gap between the two. We will report data for regional imports for each of six flat rolled products every other month. This month we are reporting through August. These six reports are intended to be reference documents with very few specific comments. The charts tell the whole story.

National level import reports do a good job of measuring the overall market pressure caused by the imports of individual products. The downside is that there are huge regional differences. Our intent is to provide buyers and sellers with an understanding of what is going on in their region of operation. Figure 1 shows the year-to-date tonnage into each region and the huge variation between them. Figure 1a presents the same data as a pie chart. By far the highest volume region in 2019, year to date through August, was the Great Lakes. The Pacific North and Atlantic South received minimal tonnage.

Total cold rolled coil imports for the year were down by 20.6 percent and decreased in all regions except the Rio Grande. The Gulf region was down by 45.9 percent and the Rio Grande was up by 2.5 percent.

Figure 2 shows the year-to-date change for each of seven regions and the change at the national level.

Figures 3, 4, 5 and 6 show the history of cold rolled coil imports by region since March 2013 on a three-month moving average basis. Note, the Y axis scales are not the same.

Regions are compiled from the following districts:

Atlantic North—Baltimore, Boston, New York, Ogdensburg, Philadelphia, Portland ME, St. Albans and Washington, D.C.
Atlantic South—Charleston, Charlotte, Miami, Norfolk and Savannah.
Great Lakes—Buffalo, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Duluth, Great Falls, Milwaukee, Minneapolis and Pembina.
Gulf—Houston, New Orleans, Mobile, San Juan, St. Louis and Tampa.
Pacific North—Anchorage, Columbia Snake, San Francisco and Seattle.
Pacific South—Los Angeles and San Diego.
Rio Grande Valley—Laredo and El Paso.

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