Steel Products Prices North America

Mills Continue to Dial Up Capacity Utilization

Written by Tim Triplett

A possible indication that the economy and steel demand gradually continue to improve, domestic steelmakers increased raw steel production for the seventh week in a row to a total of 1,320,000 net tons in the period ending July 25 with the mills operating at an average utilization rate of 58.9 percent, reported the American Iron and Steel Institute. Production increased by 1.1 percent from the prior week when the utilization rate was 58.3 percent. However, the current week’s production still represents a 28.5 percent decrease from the same period last year due to the coronavirus.

Adjusted year-to-date production through July 25 totaled 44,553,000 net tons at an average utilization rate of 66.1 percent. That’s down 20.0 percent from the same period last year when the utilization rate was 80.9 percent.

Following is production by district for the July 25 week: North East: 133,000 net tons; Great Lakes, 471,000 net tons; Midwest, 129,000 net tons; South, 524,000 net tons; and West, 63,000 net tons, for a total of 1,320,000 tons and a net increase of 14,000 tons. Production increased in the Great Lakes, South and West, offset somewhat by decreases in the Northeast and Midwest.

Note: 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. Capability for third-quarter 2020 is approximately 29.4 million tons, compared to 30.6 million tons for the same period last year and 29.1 million tons for the second quarter of 2020. 

Latest in Steel Products Prices North America