Steel Products Prices North America

Mill Capacity Utilization Dips Below 56 Percent

Written by Tim Triplett

After a brief pause, raw steel production continued to slide last week. Production in the April 25 week totaled 1,250,000 net tons with the mills operating at an average capability utilization rate of 55.8 percent, down 2.1 percent from the previous week, and down 33.9 percent from the same week last year, reported the American Iron and Steel Institute. Capacity utilization among domestic steelmakers has plummeted from more than 82 percent in early March due to the coronavirus crisis.

Adjusted year-to-date production through April 25 totaled 28,850,000 net tons at an average utilization rate of 75.4 percent–down 8.3 percent from production in the same period last year when the average utilization rate was 81.5 percent.

Following is production by district for the April 25 week: North East: 127,000 net tons; Great Lakes, 437,000 net tons; Midwest, 132,000 net tons; South, 501,000 net tons; and West, 53,000 net tons, for a total of 1,250,000 tons. Production increased modestly in the Northeast and Midwest, but declined in the other regions, including a big drop in the South. 

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.


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