Steel Products Prices North America

Mill Capacity Utilization Drops Below 80 Percent

Written by Tim Triplett

Raw steel output by U.S. mills dipped again in the week ending Nov. 30, inching below the 80 percent mark for the first time since the week ending Oct. 19. Production totaled 1,835,000 net tons at a capability utilization rate of 79.3 percent, down 1.4 percent from the previous week and down 3.6 percent compared with the same week last year when utilization was at 81.2 percent, reported the American Iron and Steel Institute.

Adjusted year-to-date production through Nov. 30 totaled 88,919,000 net tons at an average mill utilization of 80.2 percent–up 2.0 percent from 2018 when the year-to-date utilization rate was 78.1 percent.

Following is production by district for the Nov. 30 week: North East: 215,000 net tons; Great Lakes, 635,000 net tons; Midwest, 203,000 net tons; South, 699,000 net tons; and West, 83,000 net tons, for a total of 1,835,000 tons. Production for the week decreased in the Great Lakes and South, but increased in the North East, Midwest and West.

The raw steel production tonnage provided in this report is estimated. The figures are compiled from weekly production tonnage from 50 percent of the domestic producers combined with monthly production data for the remainder. Therefore, this report should be used primarily to assess production trends. The AISI monthly production report provides a more detailed summary of steel production based on data supplied by companies representing 75 percent of U.S. production capacity.

Note, capability for fourth-quarter 2019 is approximately 30.4 million tons, compared to 30.8 million tons for the same period last year and 30.6 million tons for third-quarter 2019. Year-to-date totals are adjusted for consistency with monthly data.

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