Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

SMU continues to pick up negative vibes through the analysis we currently are actively conducting on the flat rolled and plate steel markets. There is obviously something going on that is concerning buyers and sellers of steel. At the same time, one of the steel mills told me today that even though prices on their product are at low levels, their order book is quite strong. Hmmmm…. If you have received an invitation to participate in our questionnaire, please take a few minutes to answer our questions. We will be reporting what we learn later this week and over the weekend.

I am in Cincinnati conducting our 29th Steel 101 workshop. The weather was exceptional today as we toured the Nucor Gallatin steel plant, a mill that is involved in a major transition. Nucor is expanding the Gallatin mill, adding another 1.5 million tons of capacity taking the mill up to 3.0 million tons per year. We toured the new PGAL (pickle galvanize line), which takes hot rolled through the pickle mill and then straight into the galvanized line. This is a totally new production experience for the Gallatin mill, which was only a hot rolled provider prior to Nucor purchasing the facility in 2014. There is a new electric arc furnace under construction, along with a new caster and other equipment. Quite impressive.

We have an interesting group at this workshop. There are manufacturing companies, steel mills, service centers, toll processors, a trader and an investor in the steel industry. I expect a similar mix of companies in our next workshop, which will be held in Ontario, Calif. As part of that workshop, we will tour the California Steel Industries steel mill. You can find more details on our website:

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

John Packard, President & CEO

Latest in Final Thoughts

Final thoughts

What's the tea in the steel industry this week? Here's the latest SMU gossip column! Just kidding... kind of. Yes, some of the comments we receive in our weekly flat-rolled market steel buyers' survey are honestly too much to put into print. Some make us laugh. Some make us cringe. Some are cryptic. Most are serious. We appreciate them all. Below are some highlights from our survey results this week. Some of the comments that we can share with you are also included, in italics, in the buyers' own words, with minimal editing on our part.