Steel Products Prices North America

Weekly Raw Steel Production Sees Slight Slip

Written by David Schollaert

Raw steel production by U.S. mills edged down 0.8% in the week ending May 8 compared to the week prior, the first decrease in nearly a month, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI). Production totaled 1,774,000 net tons last week while mill utilization averaged 78.1%, down from 1,788,000 net tons and 78.7% week on week.

The impact of the pandemic-driven shutdowns from the same period last year cannot be overstated, as current production represents a 45.1% increase from year-ago levels when production was 1,223,000 net tons and utilization was just 55.4%. Although production has recovered since, the market is still lagging pre-pandemic levels, according the data compiled by AISI. When comparing the latest data to the equivalent pre-COVID-19 period in 2019, current production is down 9.5%.

Adjusted year-to-date production through May 8 was 32,089,000 net tons, at an average utilization rate of 77.4%. That’s up 5.7% from the same period last year when the utilization rate was 73.7% and production was 30,366,000 net tons, AISI said.

Following is production by district for the May 8 week: North East, 150,000 net tons; Great Lakes, 615,000 net tons; Midwest, 180,000 net tons; South, 753,000 net tons; and West, 76,000 net tons, for a total of 1,774,000 net tons. Production was down by 14,000 net tons compared to the week prior. The West district was the sole district to post an increased output week-on-week.

Note: The Raw Steel production tonnage provided in this report is estimated.  The figures are compiled from weekly production tonnage provided from 50% 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 production report “AIS 7”, published monthly and available by subscription, provides a more detailed summary of steel production based on data supplied by companies representing 75% of U.S. production capacity.  Note: Capability for the Second Quarter 2021 is approximately 29.5 million tons compared to 29.1 million tons for the same period last year and 29.1 million tons for the First Quarter of 2021.

WeeklyRawSteelProd Wk19

By David Schollaert,

David Schollaert

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