Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

The day was bubbling with rumors as I was actively speaking with both plate and flat rolled steel buyers. They were telling me to expect a price increase announcement on both products. The plate guys were much less confident that any increase would “stick,” but it is worth trying. On the flat rolled side, mill lead times are further out than plate, with most mills already in January production/promise dates. There continue to be questions as to whether the market is strong enough to allow for an additional $40 on top of the first $40 announced by the mills back on Oct. 24-25.

John Packard Summit 18Those service centers who participate in our flat rolled and plate steel inventories and shipment data received their “flash” report this afternoon and they have a solid hint as to the actual strength of the market. The data and our analysis are revealing, and I think important when considering where prices will go from here on each product. Especially when looking at inventories on order. If you are a service center and you would like to participate in our confidential data collection, please contact either myself: or and we can walk you through the process, and provide a confidentiality agreement.

We did pick up some new registrations for the January Steel 101 workshop, and we continue to have plenty of seats still available. For more information, please go to

I have been very busy working on the 2020 SMU Steel Summit Conference, which will be held in Atlanta on Aug. 24-26. Mark your calendars. We anticipate 1,100 to 1,200 attendees at next year’s conference. 

If you have any suggestions for speakers, subjects you would like to see covered, etc., please feel free to contact me as now is the time. I can be reached at

If you are looking to renew, upgrade or just want to know more information about becoming a subscriber (we call them members) to Steel Market Update, please contact Paige Mayhair at 724-720-1012 or by email at You are also welcomed to contact me.

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

John Packard, President & CEO

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